Kieron Pollard at a meet and greet session with kids at Adidas Store in Mumbai
Taking some time out of his busy schedule, Kieron Pollard was at the Adidas Store last morning to meet and greet some of his fans, especially kids. He also interacted with the media sharing his views on cricket and this year’s IPL. His stunning catch of Kevon Cooper earlier on Monday did grab a lot of headlines and hence it was but natural that the man himself was asked questions related to it, one of them being about Chris Gayle’s tweet about Pollard copying his style.
Pollard responded that he understands that Gayle being the entertainer that he is, his tweet was made in good spirit and while he and Gayle are great friends, he has immense respect for Gayle and would love to copy some of his great achievements on the field. He also pointed out the fact that while good ground fielding came naturally to him, he has been trying out different things during practice which is helping him do well during the actual matches.
When asked by our correspondent to compare between this catch of Kevon Cooper to his equally outstanding run-out of Yuvraj Singh in one of the previous matches, he stated that considering the match situation and the kind of impact player Yuvraj is, he would rate the run out as the more memorable one.
The focus then shifted to Mumbai Indians and their topsy-turvy journey this season and Pollard was quick to admit that their season did not start as well as expected but is still hopeful that they can pull out a good performance against the Rajasthan Royals in what could potentially be a winner takes-all match at the Wankhede Stadium on Sunday. When asked about mathematical calculations and net run-rate putting added pressure on players, he pointed out that these calculations are for the analysts and team mentors to worry about and as players, they need to only worry about putting in their best possible performance. He pointed out that returning back to the familiar territory of the Wankhede as well as sticking together as a team helped them turn things around after a dismal start to their campaign in the UAE.
When asked whether constant changes to the batting order made things difficult for the team, he responded saying that in T20 cricket, teams have to be flexible and since many new players have joined the team this season, experiments had to be done to the team to find out the best combination, though he did admit that probably they took slightly more time than the other teams in figuring out the best combination but is glad that they have finally found a good stable opening combination in Lendl Simmons and Michael Hussey.
He was then immediately asked about his team’s performance at the auctions earlier this year and about some of the ex-players now doing well elsewhere, he refused to comment on the selection process of the team management and stressed on the point that as a player, his primary goal and focus was to perform well for the team on the field and not worry about things beyond his control.
He was then asked by our correspondent about the knee injury that happened to him last year and how difficult was it for him to be away from competitive cricket for close to 5 months. He admitted that he was uncertain about how things will turn up post this injury taking into account the nature of it and hence is thankful that he could recover well before what could have been a normal recovery time. He also spoke about how the hundred he made in Trinidad in a 4-day game against Jamaica just before the IPL started helped him feel a lot more assured about his body’s fitness.
Focus then shifted to football and he said that he is a big Manchester United fan and that he will be rooting for France in the upcoming FIFA World Cup. He also added that he predicted Real Madrid to emerge victorious in yesterday’s UEFA Champions League final, which turned out to be a correct call from the big West Indian.
The big man was finally asked whether he feels like an odd one out since he does not believe in reverse sweeps and scoops, he quickly responded saying that he likes to be different but is trying to add these shots to his range. With this, the formal interaction came to an end, Pollard was kind enough to spend some time with young kids giving autographs and posing for pictures.