Royal Challengers Bangalore captain Virat Kohli held his side’s middle order responsible as the team crashed out of the IPL 2018 after their loss to Rajasthan Royals by 30 runs.
Cricket news: A composite team must be made next season as one man cannot take up the entire responsibility, says Kohli
Rajasthan had given a target of 165 for Kohli’s men to chase, but RCB were bundled up for 134. At one point during the chase RCB were 75 for 1, but the next seven wickets fell quickly for a cheap 33 runs.
The entire middle order failed except for AB de Villiers, who handled the tricky situations and scored yet another half century, but in a losing cause.
Statistics show how the entire middle order of RCB could not live up to the expectation in the entire season. While de Villiers and Kohli has got 530 and 480 runs respectively, the next batsman in the list is Mandeep Singh with 252 runs with an average of just above 25.
At the post-match presentation, Kohli said, “We wanted to strengthen the middle-order which hasn’t happened, it hasn’t been our strength and we need to do that going into the next few seasons.
“We need to be smarter with composing our team. The responsibility cannot be taken up only by AB all the time. He certainly scored runs, but others need to contribute around him.”
RCB’s bowling was however good in the second half of the tournament. Umesh Yadav has got 20 wickets, while Yuzvendra Chahal has 12 and Mohammed Siraj has 11 wickets.
“There were some new players who did well. Umesh bowled extremely well with the new ball, Chahal was great, Siraj and Moeen contributed too, so plenty of positives to take into the next season,” Kohli said.
Rajasthan Royals skipper Ajinkya Rahane praised his bowlers as they bowled extremely well on a slow track. Shreyas Gopal took four wickets, Krishnappa Gowtham had figures of 6 runs for 1 wicket in his two overs while Ish Sodhi bagged a solo wicket in his four overs.
“Though RCB had a very good batting line up, credit goes to our bowlers. Under pressure, the two leggies did really well. Getting wickets in the middle overs was never easy,” Rahane said.
Despite winning the game and staying at the fourth spot in the points table, Rajasthan’s fate will be decided based on the results of the matches between Mumbai versus Delhi and Punjab versus Chennai. Rahane said that they were only focussing on the aspects which they could control.
“This evening was very special. It was more about focussing on the things that we could control. Klaasen’s innings was really good and Rahul Tripathi’s innings at the top was magnificent. It is important to enjoy this win and stay calm,” he said.