Kolkata Knight Riders keeper-batter Dinesh Karthik explained the altercation between Ravichandran Ashwin and skipper Eoin Morgan during the match against Delhi Capitals, saying he was happy to have calmed things down. Ashwin had a go at Morgan after he was dismissed by Tim Southee in the final over of DC's innings as Karthik intervened to douse the situation.
"Rahul Tripathi threw the ball, it hit Rishabh Pant and the ball ricocheted off his hand and Ashwin called for a run. Morgan expects the batsmen to not run when it hits them, in the spirit of the cricket. I'm just happy that I have played peacemaker and things have come to a stand still," Karthik said in the post-match press conference on Tuesday.
DC captain Rishabh Pant brushed aside the seriousness of the situation saying there was nothing outside the spirit of the game.
"It's part and parcel of the game. Both Ash and Morgan were trying to win the game and there was nothing out of the spirit of the game. There can be some miscommunication in between," he said.
Karthik played a crucial knock of 12 off 14 balls in a low-scoring thriller in Sharjah as KKR chased down 128 to hand DC their first loss of the second leg.
"I don't think it's a great T20 wicket. There is a lot difficulty with shot-making. But personally I love low-scoring games and it's great to see them in T20 cricket. Sharjah has been producing them now which is very interesting," Karthik said talking about the pitch.
He also praised the Nitish Rana who smashed an unbeaten 36 off 27 balls to take KKR over the line in 18.2 overs.
"The most important thing for the team was that he remained not out till the end. He handled the pressure well. If he wants to get into the national team, he has to keep doing this and he definitely has the talent," Karthik said.
KKR are currently fourth in the table and have only suffered one narrow loss to Chennai Super Kings since arriving in the UAE. It is in stark contrast to the team's performances in the first leg, where they lost five of their opening seven games. Karthik felt that the break between the first and second phase helped the players to come back strongly.
"I think the talent was always there. It was mostly about getting the combination right. People had time to look back at themselves and what they wanted to do. They came out as much better cricketers (in the second leg)," he said.
Karthik said that the nature of Andre Russell's hamstring injury is yet unknown while pacer Lockie Ferguson, who walked off the field during the first innings, is yet to be assessed by the medical team.
"We are not sure how serious Andre Russell's injury is because its a work in progress. I feel Lockie's injury isn't that serious, physios will give an update about it later on."
Following the loss, Pant felt that his team bowled badly for a couple of overs, which helped the opposition to gain advantage.
"Because the wicket was slow, it was good if you bowl spin early on and get wickets. I think our spinners and pacers bowled well, but we were lacking in one or two overs. We will learn from our mistakes and move on," Pant said.
Pant also spoke about Steve Smith's inclusion in the team after Prithvi Shaw was sidelined due to a niggle.
"He played a very good innings in Chennai for us so we thought we will give a chance and how he does," he said.
Pant also updated on the injuries of Shaw and all-rounder Marcus Stoinis, who picked up a hamstring injury during the match against Sunrisers Hyderabad.
"Prithvi will be 80 per cent fit by the next match, but Stoinis might be out of one or two more matches," Pant said.