Chennai: Chennai Super Kings coach Stephen Fleming on Saturday exuded confidence that the defending champions have enough firepower in their batting to take on Deccan Chargers pace attack which played havoc against Kochi Tuskers Kerala in their last IPL match.
Deccan had crushed KTK by 55 runs in their last match with Ishant Sharma registering a five-for and his fast bowling colleague Dale Steyn bagging three wickets.
Asked at the pre-match press conference how CSK would handle the Indo-South African pace attack, Fleming quipped, "The good thing is I don`t have to face them. I can coach the other guys to play them.”
"But our top order is one of the biggest around and with Badrinath being in form. We`ve some wonderful Indian players along with Michael Hussey, so we`re well-equipped to deal with any attack. Morkel, Dhoni and Raina are some of the biggest
hitters around. And the talent we`ve got in our top six can outshine any other top six and they`ve performed for us," he said.
Fleming said CSK`s loss to Mumbai, when the defending champions fell to a stupendous fielding effort from the Sachin Tendulkar-led side, helped bring about a change in the team`s attitude.
"The pleasing shift for me was the game against Mumbai. We got shown the standards of fielding in this competition and it was almost a challenge. The next two games we were outstanding. Once you set yourself a benchmark for yourself, it`s very good," said Fleming.
Asked about CSK`s tendency to click one day and coming a cropper on another, he said, "Obviously I am not comfortable with it, we`ve worked hard on that but it`s really attitude. You can catch as many balls as you want but it`s really about the attitude you take into the game".
About his opponents tomorrow, Fleming said, "(DC coach) Darren Lehman is an excellent coach and he`s developed very good team spirit and they are a very well balanced side. The seam attack has (Dale) Steyn at one end the the big guy (Ishant Sharma) coming in at the other. They are a handy side.”
"But we don`t really look at the opposition too much. Every side you play is good on paper and it`s about pressure and how you deal with pressure. We don`t analyse the teams too much, we shy away because some of the things look too good on paper," said the former New Zealand captain.
Asked how his side felt to have got the first away win of the season in their victory over Pune Warriors in the last game, he said, "I wouldn`t call it a worry. We weren`t overly worried about home and away matches. The way it`s panned out we`ve played better at home but we still created chances while we played away.”
"The last game was a very disciplined effort on the back of a very good performance here so the last three games have been pretty rewarding. It`s good in a way that we played the same team twice."
Fleming felt the wicket for tomorrow`s match looked a familiar one for them.
"The pitch looks similar and we seem to know these conditions and I don`t think it will deviate too much from it," he said.
The CSK coach disagreed that the team had reached a stage where it could afford to experiment.
"We`re still not in that position. We don`t experiment anyway, we work pretty hard on getting the right eleven players (for the match). We were forced to experiment in the last game, we didn`t have Albie Morkel. (But) Albie looks like he`s coming through training pretty well," he said.
When pointed out that CSK have defeated DC the last two times the two sides met here, Fleming said he was not aware of it and said, "Form really is the last game in this competition. It can change very quickly".
On the IPL throwing up many one-season wonders, he said, "I think it`s great for the people because it gives a lot of exposure to such players. Some of these players use this opportunity to get noticed on the world stage. It`s still an Indian Premier League and the good stories come from Indian players, young players who come through and the opportunities they get."