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'Want to Finish Games Like Him': Mighty Miller Wants to Emulate 'Finisher' Dhoni in IPL 2020

Miller was released by Kings XI Punjab ahead of the IPL 2020 auction and this year will feature for a new franchise, the Rajasthan Royals.

Hailed as one of the greatest ever finishers in the history of limited-overs cricket – Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s ability to snatch victory from jaws of defeat is second to none. Dhoni, who had retired from international cricket last month, has been instrumental to India’s success at the international stage and performed equally well for his IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings. The legendary wicketkeeper-batsman has single-handedly scripted several memorable triumphs. Also Read - IPL Team Preview: Chennai Super Kings Eye Fourth Title Sans Suresh Raina

South African batsman David Miller, who has been roped up by Rajasthan Royals ahead of the 13th edition of Indian Premier League (IPL), wants to imbibe the former India skipper’s calmness in high-pressure run chases. Miller was released by Kings XI Punjab ahead of the 2020 players auction. Also Read - IPL 2020: Trent Boult on Biggest Challenge For Bowlers in UAE

The 31-year-old Proteas batsman is known for his penchant for big-hitting and stepping up in crunch situations to finish games. In the upcoming edition of the lucrative T20 tournament, Miller wants to ace the role of a finisher for Royals and spoke how Dhoni’s skill and ability helped him to read the match situation in a better way. Also Read - IPL 2020: Danielle Wyatt Reacts on RCB's Yuzvendra Chahal, Chris Morris; Calls Them 'Legends'

“I absolutely love the way Dhoni goes about his business. Certainly his calmness – you just think he’s always under control. The way he portrays himself, that’s something he’s extremely good at and I do enjoy that about him. I try and give off the same energy,” Miller was quoted by ESPNcricinfo.

Miller is a Dhoni fan but he is not oblivious to the two-time World Cup winner’s weaknesses even though he prefers to steer clear of the specifics.

“…he’s got his strengths and weaknesses as a batsman and so do I. I tend to be in awe of some of his chases rather than ‘I want to bat like him’. I suppose I just want to finish games like he does.

“Technique-wise and the way you go about it, we all have our own ways. I don’t think I can rate myself or put myself in a category.

“We’ll see how my career unfolds and finishes and then we can look back and sort of judge. Definitely, Dhoni is one of the best finishers ever; he’s proven it many times. I love watching him play.”

Miller played only eight games for KXIP over the 2017 and 2018 seasons and last year he played 10, scoring 213 runs with a strike rate of 129.87.

What went wrong for him at KXIP in recent years?

“The last couple of years I haven’t been playing for Kings XI. I suppose that’s one of the reasons why I haven’t been winning games as well. But in terms of consistency, I feel I’m better than ever before. I’m a lot more experienced now. I know what I’m expected to do.

“In the IPL I had one bad season for Kings XI – and when I say bad season, it wasn’t as good as the previous ones that I had. It wasn’t a horrific season, to say the least.”

The 2013 edition was a path-breaking one for Miller, who smashed 418 runs with a strike rate of 164.56. In the following season, he scored 446 runs with a strike rate of 149.16. He has not been able to bat in that range ever since.

“I missed the boat the last couple of years in terms of playing and I think it’s created a thing that I’ve not been playing well. The games that I’ve played in, I have contributed,” said Miller.

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