With KKR needing 35 off 30 balls, Cummins smashed 35 runs off one Daniel Sams over to help KKR romp home in style with 4 overs to spare. Cummins’ batting strike rate is 333.33 in the tournament, the best overall. The 28 year old from Westmead, Sydney also equalled the record for the fastest fifty ever in the IPL (14 balls), equalling KL Rahul’s previous record.
KKR wicket-keeper batter Sam Billings spoke to TimesofIndia.com recently about a whole host of topics and called Cummins a genuine all-rounder.
Sam Billings (Image credit: BCCI/IPL/PTI)
KKR are currently second on the points tally with 3 wins in 5 matches. The two-time champions will face Sunrisers Hyderabad next on April 15 at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai.
In an exclusive interview with TimesofIndia.com Sam Billings spoke about Cummins, what it’s like to bat alongside Andre Russell, Shreyas Iyer the captain and the batter and more.
The 30-year-old Englishman has scored 95 runs in 5 matches in the tournament so far, averaging 23.75.
What is it like to bat alongside Andre Russell, especially when he starts hitting the ball all over the park?
Scary. He (Andre Russell) is phenomenal and one of the best in the world. He has incredible power. He is one of those players who, when on song, can turn the game on its head and take away the pressure from the team. There will be times when he will bat and there will be other times when other guys would need to bat around him as well. He is proactive and aggressive. What a player to have in your team. He is just amazing.
Pat Cummins’ whirlwind knock vs Mumbai. Your take on that…
Phenomenal. He became Andre Russell, didn’t he? (laughs). Cummins’ knock was one of the best knocks I have ever seen. It was just incredible striking. He is an all-rounder. He bowls really well. He bowls at 90 miles per hour and swings the ball both ways. But he is definitely an all-rounder.
Pat Cummins (Image credit: BCCI/IPL)
You are someone who plays spin rather well. What makes you so good against spin?
I have been very lucky to get exposure to these conditions. I have played a lot of cricket here. I enjoy playing different shots, reverse sweeps, sweeps. I like to put pressure on the spinners. Sometimes it doesn’t work but sometimes it does. I enjoy the challenges of high-quality spin.
You know Shreyas Iyer well. How would you define Shreyas the batsman and Shreyas the captain?
I am really impressed by Shreyas. His development as a human, player, and captain has been phenomenal for the last few years. It was five-six years ago that we played together (at Delhi Capitals). He is very calm and very confident. He is very confident in his own abilities. He has an incredible work ethic.
Shreyas is incredibly calm as a captain. He backs his players and gives them freedom. He is a natural leader. There is no doubt that he can go on and lead many different teams for many many years. He is a good friend of mine and he is someone who has impressed me a lot in terms of his development.