IPL 2024
Sunil Gavaskar Criticizes RCB’s Reliance On Virat Kohli
By CricShots - Mar 30, 2024 4:43 pm
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The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) camp is facing a reality check in the ongoing IPL 2024 season. They slumped to their second defeat on Friday night, exposing chinks in their armor – a stuttering top order and an inconsistent bowling attack. While their pace attack, featuring the likes of Mohammed Siraj, Yash Dayal, and Alzarri Joseph, was expected to spearhead their bowling assault, they’ve been leaking runs aplenty.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli

The problem is compounded by a top order that, barring Virat Kohli, has yet to find its footing. Faf du Plessis (46 runs), Glenn Maxwell (31 runs), Rajat Patidar (21 runs), and Cameron Green (54 runs) – all have failed to register a significant score in their three outings thus far. This has left the onus of batting success heavily on the shoulders of Virat Kohli and finisher Dinesh Karthik.

Kohli, ever the dependable force, has emerged as a lone warrior with 181 runs from three innings, including two well-compiled fifties. Meanwhile, Karthik has provided valuable support lower down the order, amassing 86 runs at a strike rate of over 195.

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On Friday, RCB hosted the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru. Despite Kohli’s valiant knock of 83* (not out), they could only manage a total of 182/6. The next highest score came from Green with a modest 33. Glenn Maxwell, dropped twice during his innings, failed to capitalize on the opportunity, eventually departing for 28 runs. KKR bowlers capitalized on RCB’s batting woes, restricting them to a seemingly below-par total.

However, what unfolded next was a one-sided affair. The KKR batting unit, led by a blazing opening partnership between Sunil Narine and Phil Salt, chased down the target comfortably in just 16.5 overs. Legendary cricketer Sunil Gavaskar has expressed concern about RCB’s over-reliance on Kohli. He believes that if Kohli had received adequate support against KKR, he could have converted his 83 into a century.

Sunil Gavaskar
Sunil Gavaskar

“You tell me how much Kohli will do alone? Someone should accompany him. If someone had supported him today, he would definitely have scored 120 instead of 83. This is a team sport, not a single-man game. He didn’t get any support today,” Sunil  Gavaskar remarked on Star Sports.

RCB captain Faf du Plessis offered a different perspective. He attributed the loss to a significant change in pitch behavior during KKR’s chase.

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“Strange one, first innings we thought that the wicket was very two-paced… We thought it was a decent score knowing that it gets a little bit easier in the evening, there was a little bit of dew that came in,” he said during a post-match interaction.

With this loss, RCB has slipped to the sixth position in the 10-team IPL table. They will have to address their batting woes and bowling inconsistencies if they are to climb back into contention for the playoffs.