Rajat Patidar IPL 2024.
Rajat Patidar IPL 2024. Image Credit: X

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One of the reasons behind the impressive turnaround of the Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 was Rajat Patidar’s rich form. The Indian batter looked in a different avatar in the second half during the 17th season of the competition.

Rajat Patidar has notched up 320 runs in 11 innings at an average of 29.09 and an excellent strike rate of close to 180 with five half-centuries. One of the hallmarks of his turnaround has been how he has been smacking the spinners around the park in the middle overs.

This helped the RCB team to make a great comeback in the tournament. The ‘Play Bold’ franchise made a tough beginning in the season with just one win in their first eight games. But their last five successive wins mean they could make it to the playoffs with another win in their last game against the Chennai Super Kings.

‘I am glad bowlers keep trying to find answers.’- Rajat Patidar

The middle order batter, Rajat Patidar spoke about how everyone’s hard work in the team has paid in the success of the team towards the business end of the season, while the atmosphere has been quite nine even during the time they were losing.

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‘Of course, it hurts when things don’t go your way. But to build some momentum, we spoke about wanting to play for pride. Everyone was always working hard, we never stopped believing.’ Rajat Patidar said in an interview. ‘The atmosphere within the team was nice even when we weren’t winning, each player got support from the franchise as well. That was very important to be able to mount a comeback.

The 30-year-old spoke about how their bowlers put their hands up and executed their plans to give them momentum. It puts trust in the batter mind to turn things around.

‘I think there’s been a change in the mindset of every bowler in our squad. Even in T20s, picking wickets is most important when you’re trying to defend. During the initial phase too, our bowlers were trying to get breakthroughs in the powerplay but perhaps the execution was lacking.’ The veteran expressed ‘But I’m glad they kept trying to find answers and have got the momentum now. It instilled belief in the batters as well that we can turn things around.

Patidar also mentioned that as a better in T20s, it’s quite tough to take time in the middle, and he needs to hit the boundaries from the very first ball. He mentioned his love affair of nailing the spinners while talking about how in the middle order, it’s important to prepare from the dugout for executing the big shots.

‘The special part for me was the support I got from Rohit Bhaiya.’- Rajat Patidar

Patidar struggled in his maiden Test series against England with just 32 runs in six innings at an average of 10.5. But he spoke about enjoying his time and vows to take the confidence from the support despite his failures.

‘That series will always be special to me as I made my debut and we earned a one-sided victory. Personally, things didn’t go as I thought they would but that’s part of the game.’ Rajat Patidar reflected. ‘The special part for me was the support I got from Rohit bhaiya, the coaches, and the rest of my teammates. The fact that you’ve made it to the Indian Test team means there’s something special about you.’

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The experienced batter also said that whenever Virat Kohli practices in the nets, he makes sure he observes the session and aims to grab insights from it.

‘Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma have always been my two biggest batting idols. I make it a point to watch every net session of Virat Bhaiya and notice his footwork and stuff. I don’t go about making too many changes to my own game, but I try and see if I can add little things that I learn from him. There’s so much to learn from how he goes about his innings, how he thinks about his batting.’ The veteran concluded.

Rajat Patidar will be in action on May 18, when Royal Challengers Bengaluru takes on Chennai Super Kings in a virtual knockout game at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium.