It was another abysmal show with the bat for Royal Challengers Bangalore. For the third match in four, with one of them being washed out, RCB produced a disappointing effort that would definitely leave their famed batting lineup red faced. It was visible on Virat Kohli’s face as he went about his business, scoring 55, as the visitors lost wickets regularly against Rising Pune Supergiant in Pune. As the RCB skipper finally regained form, none of his teammates stepped up to help in chasing down 158 runs for a much needed win. (Results | Fixtures | Points Table)
In the last three matches that RCB have played, they’ve scored 49 (vs KKR, lowest IPL score ever), 134 and 96/9 on Saturday. The 61-run loss left RCB with little to no hopes of progressing to playoffs even though it still remains a mathematical possibility. But with just two wins in ten matches, RCB can give up hopes with four matches remaining for them.
However, team head coach Daniel Vettori maintained that it is not time yet to have an analysis of where things went wrong. The former New Zealand spinner stated that with four matches to go, season is not over for the Kohli-led team. “It’s not the time to assess the campaign because we’ve still got four games to go and they’re really important for the franchise. I think before going through any post-mortems, we need to gather ourselves and work our way through a packed calendar,” he said in the post-match press conference.
He further added that the focus of the team should be on getting something out of the next match against Mumbai Indians on Monday. “There’s three games in a week and we travel to Mumbai tomorrow. We need to play well there at 4 O’ clock. We know how hard that is and how hot it gets and how well Mumbai are playing. There is chance to regroup in the next 24 hours and push for that game,” he added.
With the batting failing miserably, Vettori said bowling has been their saving grace and a positive this season. He opted to credit Adam Milne and Pawan Negi for the surge. “Bowling performance throughout the season has been exceptional and been a real improvement over the last year. A lot of it is down to the wickets we’ve played on. But I thought the way we’ve fought back with (Adam) Milne and (Pawan) Negi who has been fantastic for us throughout the year. They’ve been the bright spots in our performance,” he concluded.
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