After a disappointing loss against RCB, Brendon McCullum has stressed that Sunil Narine certainly comes back into their calculations after clearing the fitness tests. While hinting at one or two possible changes for the Mumbai leg, McCullum credited de Villiers-Maxwell for changing the game.
Despite the absence of raw pace in RCB’s bowling unit, it was a surprise to see KKR not opting to utilize the services of the all-rounder, Sunil Narine in the batting order. While it looked like a tactical move, KKR head coach Brendon McCullum confirmed that the all-rounder was not fully fit to be available for the clash against RCB.
However, McCullum stressed that Narine certainly comes into their calculation for rest of the games this season, adding that they opted to go with Shakib Al Hasan to give them a batting edge on the night against RCB. The former Kiwi skipper also added that results haven’t come KKR’s way despite their good outings and hinted at one or two changes for their next game, which would be at the Wankhede Stadium.
“Sunil Narine stood on the ropes, he has a bit of injury where he wasn’t 100% fit. He certainly comes into our calculation, he was touch and go for today’s game. We opted for Shakib, who has been good for us and gives us that batting edge as well,” McCullum confirmed in the post-match press conference.
“After 3 games, the guys have played well but we haven’t got results in our way. We probably need some fresh legs and plans, we might make one or two changes for our next game,” he added.
McCullum admitted that the plans were right in place but the missed execution cost them the encounter. However, the former Kiwi skipper credited the two RCB batsmen - AB de Villiers and Glenn Maxwell - for changing the course of the game with their batting display.
“Whilst we had the plans in play, we missed with our execution, was it because of AB de Villiers presence or because we weren’t quite good on the day. We had our plans but couldn’t execute them. Have to say, that was some tremendous batting from both AB and Glenn Maxwell and what they did was eliminate the pitch out of play with their batting. When you are playing against big players like that, you are going to be hurt if you aren’t right on the spot. “
While there was a cry over whether KKR should have bowled Varun Chakravarthy first-up against Maxwell, McCullum cited that they had to save the mystery bowler against AB de Villiers, which was one of the reasons for holding the spinner back.
“In hindsight, we would have bowled Varun Chakravarthy when Glenn Maxwell came in to bat. But we also had to save his overs against AB de Villiers. In retrospect, we should have probably bowled him in that over but there are many aspects in the game where we could tidy up.”
Before the IPL, Glenn Maxwell showcased his form with the Australian national team, against New Zealand where he smacked the ball to all parts of the ground. McCullum noted that Maxwell’s confidence and ability to take the game on with his attitude certainly came into play this season, which has helped RCB.
“Maxwell has come into this season’s IPL with a refreshed attitude, he’s clearly confident, hitting the shots from ball one. He’s taking the game on, he has been successful in the Big Bash and for Australia with the same attitude. He took the game away from us today with his batting. So look he’s clearly confident and if we had our time again today, we would have done something different. Fair credit to AB and Maxwell, who really started the proceedings for RCB.”