Ashwin leadership played an important role in helping Mujeeb evolve: Hodge

Vastavam web: Leadership plays an important role in a player’s development and young Afghanistan spinner Mujeeb ur Rahman’s improved performance has a lot to do with playing under the wings of Ravichandran Ashwin, Kings XI Punjab chief coach Brad Hodge insisted today.All of 17, Mujeeb has played in KXIP’s all seven games with seven wickets at an economy rate of 6.51. Ashwin in fact wanted the teenager to defend 17 runs against Delhi Daredevils at Kotla and he responded to his captain’s call by restricting the opposition to 12 runs.”Mujeeb is a very simple human being. Therefore, it is important that one makes him aware about the various processes without making it complicated. Communication is one issue but we have very capable assistant coaches, who would pass any specific message that needs to be conveyed to him,” Hodge said.

Hodge, who was an acclaimed T20 freelancer during his playing days (he represented 16 various domestic T20 teams), is enjoying his partnership with KXIP’s Director of Cricket Virender Sehwag.”I think the secret of KXIP’s success this season has been at the auction table itself. We went into auction with a plan which was successfully executed,” Hodge added.

The veteran of 277 T20 games also feels that a champion performer like Chris Gayle must have felt “hurt” after not being picked during KXIP’s first two games.
Gayle has since then played four matches, scoring 252 runs with a hundred and two half-centuries to his credit.”Sometimes you need to challenge the greatest in the world. Gayle had to sit out in a couple of games and that must have hurt a champion like him. Even before the start of the tournament, Gayle had shown a great attitude and no one can ever question his class and ability. He is an absolute legend of the game,” the former Australian middle-order batsman said.