Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) head coach Simon Katich stated that the side lost the momentum from the 10th game of the league stage. According to him, the batting unit, which was looking great at the beginning of the tournament, faded at the end become a major concern for them.
RCB had a promising start to the tournament. With Devdutt Padikkal taking the command from the opening position and Yuzvendra Chahal and other bowlers chipping in, it looked like they found the perfect balance this season. But Virat Kohli’s poor form and middle-order batsmen being unproductive, they had a fag end. Once leading the points table, RCB lost four games on a trot before losing in the eliminator.
Simon Katich also feels the same that RCB lost track in the last four games. He points that especially, and the batting department had a downfall.
“We felt we were on track till the 10-game mark heading into the last four block of games. Looking back, we think we ran out of a bit of steam probably with the bat and that’s one area that faded a bit after a really good start to the tournament,” Katich said.
Royal Challengers Bangalore was knocked out of the tournament after their disappointing performance against SunRisers Hyderabad in the eliminator. With Virat Kohli and Devdutt Padikkal losing their wickets early, they managed to set up an undaunting target of 131 runs.
The bowlers didn’t have much to defend, but Mohammed Siraj gave two early breakthroughs, picking the wickets of Shreevats Goswami and David Warner, setting the momentum for RCB.
The leg-spinners Adam Zampa and Yuzvendra Chahal put pressure on SRH by bowling dot balls. As a result, the game went to last over. Navdeep Saini needed to defend nine runs, but Jason Holder hit back to back boundaries to secure the place in the second qualifier for them.
Simon Katich credits SRH’s bowlers for taking a toll on RCB’s batsman and restricting them to a below-par total. Being disappointed, he believes that if Bangalore had 150 runs total, results would have been different.
“Credit to Sunrisers, they squeezed us beautifully and then we were always playing catch-up. We felt if we could get 150, we could be in the game with two leggies (Yuzvendra Chahal and Adam Zampa) in the team.
“The wicket was slow and offering a bit of turn. To stack our batting and get 130 was disappointing,” the former Australian cricketer said.
We Did Too Many Changes Like Past: Simon Katich
As Aaron Finch could not give a good base, several changes were made at the top to find a settled combination. In the eliminator, Virat Kohli had to open with Padikkal, but it backfired. Simon Katich believes that they had done too many changes to find the perfect combination.
“Aaron Finch didn’t get dropped till the 11th game. In terms of settled combination, we did do that for the first 10 games and unfortunately, Finchy didn’t get the runs we expected.“Josh Phillippe came in, got an opportunity and going into play-offs we thought Virat will open and unfortunately, it didn’t work. We didn’t chop and change too much like in the past and the only changes were forced one due to form,” he said in defense.
“A great sign for the future is Devdutt Padikkal. He was magnificent at the top of the order. It is a tough job for a young man in his first season. He played some great knocks to set us up. With the ball, Washington Sundar did a great job for us. (Mohammed) Siraj showed some good signs with the new ball at the back-end. Hopefully, they will all get better during the next season.”