'I was surprised Nitish Rana selected him...': Yusuf Pathan poses serious question to KKR captain after MI loss
Speaking after KKR's defeat vs MI, Yusuf Pathan questioned Nitish Rana's team selection strategy and also had some advice for him.
Kolkata Knight Riders have now lost back-to-back matches in IPL 2023, crashing to defeats against Sunrisers Hyderabad and Mumbai Indians. In their latest outing in Match 22, the Nitish Rana-led side lost by five wickets to MI and Rana's team selection has been questioned by fans, experts. Chasing a target of 186 runs, MI reached 186/5 in 17.4 overs, courtesy of a knock of 58 runs off 25 balls by Ishan Kishan. Meanwhile, Suryakumar Yadav also finally found some form with a crucial knock of 43 runs off 25 balls. For KKR's bowling department, Impact Player Suyash Sharma took two wickets.
The Kolkata pacers had a poor performance, with Lockie Ferguson taking a wicket in 1.4 overs, with an economy of 11.40. The Kiwi pacer also leaked 19 runs. India's Shardul Thakur scalped a dismissal in two overs, at an economy of 12.50, and conceded 25 runs. On the other hand, Umesh Yadav failed to take a dismissal in two overs at 9.50 economy and leaked 19 runs.
Initially, Venkatesh Iyer single handedly took KKR to 185/6 in 20 overs, with a knock of 104 runs in 51 balls. The all-rounder was in hot form and dominated MI bowlers. Meanwhile, Hrithik Shokeen scalped two wickets for Mumbai.
Speaking after the match, former KKR player Yusuf Pathan questioned Rana's team selection strategy. The former India star felt that Ferguson should not have been selected if he wasn't given the new ball. "I was surprised as to why did he select Ferguson in the playing XI. If you are not going to give him the new ball, then why is he playing? He is now bowling that well, so maybe change him for someone else because his pace bowling attack is coming across as very weak", he said.
Furthermore, Yusuf felt that Umesh hasn't been getting good support from KKR's other pacers. "Shardul Thakur, Ferguson and Umesh Yadav are there. Last season, Umesh was brilliant and showed good form. But he needs a wicket taking partner so that the entire pressure doesn't fall on him. If there is so much pressure on a fast bowler, then maybe even he won't be able to perform well. The other two pacers need to perform better. They should also check for other options," he further added.
After the defeat, KKR are currently fifth in the IPL 2023 points table, with four points from five matches, packed with two victories and three defeats. For their next match, KKR face Delhi Capitals in Match 28, at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in New Delhi, on Thursday.