Chris Gayle, Kings XI Punjab star batsman has so far played three games for the franchise in IPL 2020, all of which they have won. Kings XI Punjab has sparked a resurgence of their faltering campaign as at one stage they were placed last in the points table by three consecutive victories on the trot by defeating the likes of Royal Challengers Bangalore, Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals.
Sachin Tendulkar has underlined Chris Gayle’s impact on the team who was not included after leading run-scorers Mayank Agarwal, and KL Rahul were in sublime touch, but KXIP were losing close contests and had won one while losing 8 matches. Now, after three wins in a row, they are placed 6th with four wins and eight points.
Chris Gayle Is A Smart Cricketer And Extremely Clever – Sachin Tendulkar
Chris Gayle remained out of the side in the first few games of Kings XI Punjab due to Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul contributing at the top. The management somehow slotted the southpaw as he batted at number three without disrupting the prolific opening stand. In the first game against the Royal Challengers, Chris Gayle mustered a half-century while crafting useful cameos in the next two.
Sachin Tendulkar revealed that being one of the most experienced T20 players, Chris Gayle is a smart cricketer and will not go after the bowling by only playing big shots. The 47-year old retired Indian batsman underlined that the 40 year old West Indian batsman would rather take singles off a bowler who is threatening and will go for the big shots against relatively weak bowlers.
“He is a big-hitter no doubt, but he is a smart player and a clever guy. When he finds threatening, who could get him out, he is prepared to play even sometimes an over where an odd single is scored. Then he will target one or two bowlers.”
“So, don’t think Gayle is going to go out at every ball, he doesn’t do that, he understands the surface, he reads the pace and the bounce of the surface and what the bowler is good at and when he realizes there is a bowler who I can target, he goes all out after them and that would be the strategy throughout the tournament because that is what I have noticed throughout. He is a smart guy,” Tendulkar told in a video in his official Twitter handle.
Sachin Tendulkar highlights that Chris Gayle analyses the bounce and spin in the surface and strategize according to the same. Thus, despite being a designated six-hitter, the 40-year old will not try to hit every ball for a maximum as he rather prefers to read the abilities of a bowler who he can target.
Chris Gayle’s Inclusion Makes Kings XI Punjab A Tough Side To Beat – Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Tendulkar added that inclusion of Chris Gayle has boosted Kings XI Punjab through his positive stroke play and hard-hitting display. He remains confident that with a dangerous batting line-up consisting of Chris Gayle, KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, and Nicholas Pooran, there is still hope for them to reach play-offs and even win IPL title for the first time and they will become a formidable side to reckon with despite suffering seven losses so far.
“Well, he has brought a lot of energy in the team and there are certain players with the way they play, their style, the statement they make with the hard-hitting shots. It has a positive impact on the team and that is exactly what has happened. Although I know KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal have been batting well. Nicholas Pooran is another dangerous guy and the addition of Chris Gayle makes a dangerous batting line-up.”
“The energy what the dressing room brings after the victories, three back to back victories is infectious. Everyone feels it and everyone wants to express themselves and that is what I foresee. Kings XI Punjab is going to be a formidable team,” he added.
The batting maestro believes that every victory inserts a lot of positive self-belief in the dressing room and drives the momentum in a tournament like IPL. Thus, with everyone eager to express themselves, KXIP are a formidable team to beat.