Chris Gayle of Punjab Kings plays a shot in IPL 2021(PTI)
Chris Gayle of Punjab Kings plays a shot in IPL 2021(PTI)

'Undue pressure on Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran': Former cricketers slam PBKS batting approach against KKR in IPL 2021

  • IPL 2021, PBKS vs KKR: There is undue pressure on Chris Gayle and Nicholas Pooran for putting up a batting score and issues with the Punjab Kings batting line-up believe former India cricketer Virender Sehwag and Pragyan Ojha.
PUBLISHED ON APR 27, 2021 07:19 AM IST

Former India cricketers Virender Sehwag and Pragyan Ojha blamed the thought process in Punjab Kings' batting line-up for their crushing five-wicket loss to the Kolkata Knight Riders in an IPL 2021 match in Ahmedabad on Monday. While Sehwag believed there was a need to change the structure of the PBKS batting line-up, Ojha said the top-order is putting undue pressure on big-hitters Chris Gayle and Nicholas Pooran to put up a big score.

Punjab Kings went through a batting collapse against KKR. Put in to bat first, KL Rahul & Co were restricted to 124 for 9 as none of the batters could get a decent score in except Mayank Agarwal, who scored a scratchy 31. In reply, Eoin Morgan fired an unbeaten 47 and stitched a 66-run fourth-wicket stand with Rahul Tripathi (41) to help KKR win the game by 5 wickets.

Gayle scored a golden duck while Pooran registered his highest-score in this IPL - 19 off 19 balls.

Despite having some big guns of the game, PBKS failed to post a challenging score against the Knight Riders. Sehwag opined that the KL Rahul-led side was outstanding with the ball but they need to work out on their batting structure.

Also Read | IPL 2021: Bowlers help Knights move up from the bottom

“Punjab need to sort out their resources, especially when they are batting first. No doubt Punjab bowled very well. They also produced a brilliant performance with the ball against Mumbai Indians in their last game. But the most important factor for them is their batting,” Sehwag told Cricbuzz.

Sehwag further pointed out that PBKS batsmen failed to contribute which restricted them from posting a big total in the game against KKR.

“They need to make sure that their hard-hitters start performing well which will eventually make them consistent in winning games. They have the firepower to score 200-plus runs. Even if two out of their four batsmen click at right time, they can completely change the game,” he said.

“We call CSK as one of the best teams because once their batters gain form, all of them can be seen contributing. That contribution of 20-30 runs from each batter was missing in the case of Punjab Kings. None of them contributed,” Sehwag added.

Ojha, on other hand, said PBKS are making the mistake of aiming too high at the beginning. They should instead change their plans according to the kind of start their openers Rahul and Agarwal in a particular match.

"They should think about 160-170 at first. But if you start thinking from the beginning that we have a very good batting line-up with Chris Gayle and Nicholas Pooran and we should aim 180-190 then you are putting undue pressure on (them).

"You can only think about a big score once you have got a good start. So you have to change your plans accordingly. You can't think that you have big names and they will always score runs. You have the look at the kind of form they are in too. Can't plan based on past glory," Ojha added.

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