After a close-finish loss against KXIP, AB de Villiers has opined that KXIP are a much better side than what the IPL standings reflect, with them at the bottom of the table. On the other hand, de Villiers shushed all kinds of criticism surrounding RCB’s decision of sending him at No.6 against KXIP.
When Royal Challengers Bangalore took on Kings XI Punjab in Sharjah, the Punjab-based side was on the back of a five-match losing streak. To add to that, they had just won one game in the entire season, that too coming against RCB in the early stage of the competition. However, despite the string of losses, KXIP were never overtly a terrible side, with their close losses. Before the game against RCB, they managed to fall out of play, failing to score 22 runs from the last three overs against KKR.
However, against RCB, they were up for the party, starting from their approach on the field, with an uber-aggressive lineup. In equal measures, they were brilliant with the bat and the ball during the match, which got them two important points. Following the game, AB de Villiers reflected on the clash, opining that Punjab are a much better side than what the IPL standings have reflected.
“In my view, KXIP are a much better team than their current league position suggests, and, in this tournament, it really is the case that anybody can beat anybody on any given day. Any of the eight teams are capable of winning five or six matches in a row. This is what makes the IPL such an exciting contest; it is completely unpredictable,” de Villiers wrote on his column for Hindustan Times.
For the men in Red and Gold, their biggest criticism on the night was the decision to send the right-handed de Villiers at No.6, where he only scored two off five deliveries before folding out. Despite the criticism surrounding the franchise’s ‘strategic’ decision to send him at 6, the Proteas man quickly closed down the criticism, admitting that it was a ‘legitimate’ cricketing decision from the management.
“At that precise moment, I was asked to wait because the coach and captain had decided to send out left-handers to face the two KXIP leg-spinners, who were bowling at the time. That was a legitimate cricketing decision. Teams all around the world often prefer left-handed batsmen to face leg-spin bowling. I did not question the call at the time it was made, and I do not question the call now. There is absolutely no problem from my side,” he added.