Kolkata: Ignored for Australia's upcoming limited-overs tours, six-hitting sensation Chris Lynn on Tuesday said he may not be 100 percent fit on the field, but he is batting with "freedom" and fulfilling expectations.
Troubled by a dodgy shoulder, the 28-year-old was deemed unfit and was dropped for Australia's upcoming limited-overs tours of the United Kingdom and Zimbabwe.
But the Kolkata Knight Riders opener has had a successful return from injury in the Indian Premier League, scoring 277 runs at 30.77 with a strike rate of 133.81.
"I was probably a little bit nervous and apprehensive early on but of late I can bat with freedom. I've shown that in the last couple of innings in small glimpses.
"I am certainly not 100 percent. For me batting is not an issue at all, that's first and foremost priority. On the field, I am not fielding at the positions that I want to field in," Lynn said on the eve of their match against Mumbai Indians.
The most expensive Australian in the IPL, Lynn has played in all 10 of KKR matches but is limited in his ability to throw with his dominant left arm while he's also been instructed not to dive, given that he has injured both shoulders while diving in recent years.
"I'm a little bit restricted there. But at the end of the day, if I score more runs then I'm doing my job. Batting is the priority. I think a big score is just around the corner."
MI have won 17 of the 21 matches they have played against KKR across 11 seasons, the most wins for an IPL team against any opponent.
In the first-leg two days ago, MI stretched their winning streak to seven matches, as KKR's last win against them had come in 2015.
Lynn said both teams tend to step up as they have built a healthy rivalry over the years.
"They got the better of us in Mumbai and we would definitely be looking to get one back. If we take our foot off the throat, we can find ourselves very quickly out of the competition. We want to make sure we are out there in the finals, making a run for the Cup."
History may suggest it's advantage Mumbai Indians but their batsman Jean-Paul Duminy looked to live in the present.
"It's certainly not in our mind. There's been some great success against KKR but at the end, it's about performance on that day. It will not play any part going into tomorrow's (Wednesday) game. It does not represent much. It's about how you going to approach tomorrow's game. You got to make sure what's in front of you."
The defending champions have revived their campaign with back-to-back wins.
"There's (only) one way to go and play the best cricket with our backs against the wall. You can try duck and dive, and shy away from the pressure. What's been great about our team that we stood up and recognised that we need to take the responsibility and change the fortunes around.
"The manner we have played our cricket in a few days epitomised the brand of cricket we play and that's the aggressive one. We take the bull by the horns. We obviously want to try and win every game from here on."
"It's a fresh game, a fresh start. We can't be living in the past or past success. We want to make sure what challenge lies in front of us. KKR would like to come back fighting. They are also in a position where they would want to win. We want to make sure we are smart, clinical in executing our skills."
Showering praise on Hardik Pandya who has grabbed 14 wickets from nine matches, he said, "He's been an exceptional talent. One of those who backs himself in pressure moments. He's a pressure moment player who stands up and executes to the best of his ability.