The Royal Challengers Bangalore are losing one game after the other and the frustration of the game shows clearly on the face of skipper Virat Kohli. Even after making four changes in their playing even for the match against Kolkata Knight Riders, the team couldn’t finish the game like they wanted. In the absence of their hardest hitter AB de Villiers, the team finally used Tim Southee in the 2018 IPL season and tried to work with Manan Vohra and new spinner M Ashwin to help them lead to victory. Unfortunately, the team couldn’t capitalize and the results was usual- RCB losing the match.
AB de Villiers was down with a viral infection which left the RCB squad on their toes for Sunday’s match. Note that RCB has already let go of one of the most explosive men in the game, Chris Gayle. Though his performance was on-and-off for RCB in the past few years, he is in great form and certainly at ease in the Kings XI Punjab team and has been proving vital in their victories this season.
The team’s performance at their home ground is best described as lackluster. In the absence of AB, the skipper Kohli started his game slowly, scoring only 20 runs off his first 18 balls. KKR was relieved and their bowlers were much more confident this time, as they had to face only one of the best two batsmen in cricket.
Chris Lynn, KKR striker said, “Yeah, it’s obviously a couple of smiles on the bowler’s faces. We know AB, in the form he is, is always a dangerous batsman but we couldn’t take the foot off the throat because Baz (Brendon McCullum) is such a good striker of the ball. [We had] a little half-smile but we knew we still had a job at hand.”
Now RCB has slipped to no. 7 in the points tally while KKR is in the top four. Brandon McCullum, who replaced de Villiers in the match said, “We definitely missed AB de Villiers. He’s probably the best player in the world and one of the best we’ve seen in the history of the game, so for him to be absent was a huge blow for us. He’s a tough customer as well, so obviously he’s pretty ill to not take the field today.”
Does his presence matter so much to the team’s morale? If McCullum is to be believed, then yes. He said, “[AB] is desperate to get out there, so hopefully he’ll be back in the next game. He’s such a key player for us, and such a good leader. A good man to have around.”
Hoping for a better run, he added, “It’s tough when you’re losing a few games, and not getting the results you want, but you just have to be strong in your own group’s mind on what you’re trying to achieve. We’re going to go on the road soon, and it’ll be nice to get a win before we get on the road. We’re going to have to do it tough, and that’s our fault because we didn’t get the results earlier.”
The team will face Mumbai Indians next.