Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan whose overall performance both with the bat and ball helped Kolkata Knight Riders beat Rajasthan Royals said that early wickets boosted his confidence.
[Scorecard: IPL 5: KKR vs RR]
"Early wickets boosted my confidence and helped me settle my nerves. Whenever you bowl the first over, there are butterflies in the stomach. This was one pitch where I needed to bowl well and I did pitch the ball in right areas," man-of-the-match Shakib said at the post match press conference, on Friday.
Shakib claimed three for 17 to restrict the Royals to a low scoring 131, but he also contributed with the bat hitting a crucial six in the penultimate over to secure a comfortable victory for the Gambhir and Co.
"There wasn't much pressure on me as we were close to run-a-ball and we needed just a boundary."
Kolkata skipper Gautam Gambhir praised his bowlers especially spinners Shakib and Sunil Narine.
"Always knew 120-125 will be a good, but we had the batting to chase it down. They started well but Shakib did well along with Narine and later the batsmen like Jacques, Manoj did well. Credit to Narine for the way in which he bowled the 19th over. He is a mystery bowler, difficult to play and the ploy keeping him for the end helped."
Royals captain Rahul Dravid said that 131 was a competitive score, Royals have now lost two matches in a row. "We always knew it was a competitive score, but they built up a partnership after an early wicket. We knew we had to go hard up front and set up a base. I believe the experience to play on these tracks will help the youngsters. Although we are not comfortable losing two in a row but hope to bounce back soon," Dravid said.