‘Imagine if we had those players’: KXIP co-owner rues letting three youngsters go ahead of IPL 2020
Kings XI Punjab co-owner Ness Wadia was impressed with the performance of youngsters like Ravi Bishnoi and Arshdeep Singh who stood up and displayed standout performances in the recently-concluded IPL but also rued letting go of exciting talents who shone in the 13th edition of the tournament for other franchises.
“Rahul captained exceedingly well and gained in confidence with each game. We are lucky to have him. Shami has been brilliant too and has adjusted brilliantly to the T20 format. Pooran and the young Ravi Bishnoi and Arshdeep Singh too performed well,” Wadia told PTI.
KXIP had the services of T Natarajan (now SRH) and Varun Chakravarthy (KKR) in the past but they let them go. Wadia took their names also hoped they had stuck with Sam Curran, who proved to one of the best all-round performers in what turned out to be CSK’s worst-ever season.
“Imagine if we had those players, Sam Curran (CSK) also but again it is all in hindsight. Each coach who comes in has a thought process and a manner in conducting himself like any other CEO of a company.
“One has to allow them time to settle, provide stability and allow them to make mistakes and learn from them and take the team forward,” said Wadia.
It was a roller-coaster ride for KXIP this IPL. They lost six out of their first seven games before winning five in a row to storm back into play-off contention. The Rahul-led side needed to win its last league game against Chennai Super Kings to reach the top-four but it couldn’t.
Looking back at the recently-concluded season, Wadia said the umpiring error to call a short-run when it wasn’t, cost the team a play-off berth though it did not show the required consistency in the first year under captain and coach combine of Rahul and Kumble.
“It is a new captain, new team with a lot of fresh faces, sometimes it clicks and sometimes it doesn’t. The auction is coming up soon and we would be looking to plug the gaps in the middle-order and our bowling,” said Wadia.
“The international players did not perform to the expected level,” he said referring to the likes of Glenn Maxwell and Sheldon Cottrell, for whom KXIP paid big money at last year’s auction.
(With PTI inputs)