Kimberley:Deccan Chargers captain Adam Gilchrist could not help but praise Rohit Sharma for his fine bowling efforts in the IPL, wondering his batting mainstay was fighting for the Purple Cap instead of chasing the Orange Cap for the highest run scorer.
Rohit took a hat-trick against Mumbai on May 6 and followed it up with three wickets for just 12 runs in Deccan's 53-run thumping of Rajasthan Royals on Monday and Gilchrist was all praise for the young Indian.
"Yeah, Rohit looks like fighting for the Purple Cap (for highest wicket taker) instead of Orange Cap. I was telling him like this after his hat-trick. He was fantastic today also and every team would have loved to have a player like him," Gilchrist said after the match against Rajasthan Royals.
Gilchrist also praised West Indian Dwayne Smith, whose late charge of 32-ball 47 lifted Deccan to 166 for seven, and Sri Lankan Chaminda Vaas (2/19) for contributing to the win.
"Dwayne (Smith) played beautifully to set up a difficult target (for Rajasthan) and then (Chaminda) Vaas put pressure right at the start of Rajasthan run chase on his first match," he said.
"It was a clinical effort, batting as well as bowling," Gilchrist added.
Rajasthan captain Shane Warne rued they lost the plot but promised to bounce back to claim a spot in the semifinals. "Surprisingly, so many things failed today. Fielding was our strength but we did not do well in that department also. It was one of the matches our plans did not materialise," Warne said.
Rajasthan are now on fourth spot with 11 points from as many matches and Warne said they would look to win all the remaining three games.
"We have to learn the hard way and win the remaining three matches to be in the semifinals. We are a quality side and we can win the three matches. We will bounce back," he added.
Man-of-the-match Dwayne Smith said he told himself to hang on for a while before opening up towards the end of the innings after he came into the crease in the 10th over with his side down at 70 for three.
"I thought all I need to do was stay put at the wicket by taking the singles and try to score as many runs as possible towards the end. I am happy that I could contribute to the team's cause," said the West Indian.