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Jayawardene enjoying his role as opener for Daredevils

Delhi,Sports, Sat, 28 Apr 2012 IANS

New Delhi, April 28 (IANS) Daredevils vice-captain Mahela Jayawardene is happy opening the innings in the shortest format of the game in the Indian Premier League (IPL).


Jaywardene struck a valuable half-century in Daredevils' convincing 37-run win against Mumbai Indians at the Ferozeshah Kotla here Friday night.


The Sri Lankan captain says playing as an opener gives him more opportunities to go for the shots.


"Opening the innings gives me more opportunities to go for runs, hit boundaries during the powerplays, then try and control the situation," Jayawardene said after the match.


Jayawardene said his role as an opener is to anchor the innings.


"We have an understanding among ourselves. Today I got into a rhythm but when Viru got his eye in, I tried to rotate the strike. When (KP) Kevin Pietersen came in he took over. We are a group of players and my job is to complement the likes of Viru, KP, Ross (Taylor) and Irfan (Pathan). We are gelling pretty well," he said.


Asked what will happen to the opening pair of Virender Sehwag and Jaywardene when Australian opener David Warner joins the squad, Jaywardene said: "It will be a healthy headache for the team management."


Jaywardene was happy with the ruthless batting style of Daredevils.


"We would like to play like this. Credit to all the boys. Our closest (win) was against Deccan Chargers when KP single-handedly took us to win," he said.


Jaywardene was impressed with the return of his compatriot and Mumbai Indians pace spearhead Lasith Malinga, who played Friday after a brief injury lay-off due to back spasm.


"Playing Malinga in the nets does help, but even playing him on the nets is not easy at times. We didn't let him get off to a good start. He bowled to a very good line, don't think he was stiff. He gave 100 percent and the first over was very good, on any other day he could have taken wickets," he said.


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