How can his first game against Sunrisers be just another game then? Have all the scars healed?
Broadcaster Harsha Bhogle poked Warner at the presentation on Thursday by asking, “was there something about today’s innings? The fluency, the strokeplay, everything was just perfect.”
Warner only referred to the batting-friendly conditions, but nothing about the past.
“I think when you rock up here and look at that wicket, it’s a really nice wicket, and it doesn’t matter if you bat or second,” Warner replied. “You know it’s going to be nice and true and I’ve obviously had some success here and played my strokes, didn’t think about hitting gaps and just watch the ball and hit the ball. It was going to come off and fortunate that it did. “
Warner this time deflected towards the challenging weather. “Obviously it’s challenging here with the humidity in Mumbai. I was cooked there towards the back end, I’m getting older and having Rovi at the other end, he’s got some serious power to clear the fence, it was amazing strike. I was glad he was at the other end. “
Bhogle nudged him once again, and this time more directly. “You didn’t need motivation today. I look at you and I still think Sunrisers sometimes, to be honest.”
Warner also replied more directly but didn’t reveal much. “I didn’t need extra motivation. We’ve all seen what’s happened before in the past and it was just to get a win on the board and get back in this contest.”
“It was a little bit more than just a little bit more,” Watson said with a laugh. “He was certainly up and about in the team meeting all game, which in the end is the intensity you need to be at your best and Davey certainly brought that tonight. And everyone else fed off that energy as well. You see the way Rovman came in and he sort of thrived off that energy. Dave just drove the train with his energy, with his desperation to really prove a point. He certainly did that tonight.
“You could see the intensity he had tonight and he wanted to make sure he did everything he possibly could, leave no stone unturned for tonight’s game and he stepped up beautifully.”
“At the start of the last over I asked him if he wanted a single to try and hit a hundred but he said, ‘listen, that’s not how cricket is played,’ and that I should try to smack it as hard as I can and I did that, “Powell had said on broadcast after Capitals’ innings.
When Warner was asked about not going for a century, he said: “100%. And I said to him I’m running two, no matter what and I don’t care if I get run-out. If we get 200- plus… I thought 190 was a par score but anything over 200 [was good] and I said to him if he was there at the end, we could get 210-220. So I’m just glad he cleared the fence [in the last over]. “
On a chat for iplt20.comWatson then teased Warner by asking, “Do you think you’ll have the same fire in your belly for the next couple of games as well?”
“I’ve always got fire in my belly, you know that Shane,” Warner replied with a grin while scratching his head and Watson had a hearty laugh standing next to him.
Vishal Dikshit is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo