Royal Challengers Bangalore’s (RCB) return to the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 wasn’t a particularly good one as they were bundled out for just 92 and then went on to lose by a massive nine-wicket margin with 60 balls to spare.
RCB coach Mike Hesson in the press conference following the match said Virat Kohli stepping down as captain did not have any effect on the result and former West Indies captain Brian Lara concurs with that.
“It was a poor performance from RCB. Take nothing away from KKR. We know KKR is a very good outfit. They’ve got their issues. They played poorly in the first half of the tournament,” Lara said on Cricket.com’s show ‘Man vs Machine.’
“Don’t know if Virat Kohli’s decision could be bit of a disturbance. I don’t believe so. As a group of professionals, they would want to win this year, he would want to win this year. It’s too early to say if such an announcement can have an adverse effect on your team.”
“They were outgunned by a team that we all know, when they are at their very best, it would be very difficult to keep them out,” he added.
Lara further stated that Kohli’s dismissal was more of a technical flaw.
“In the World Cup 2019 semi-final against New Zealand, LBW again – you look his head position. The ball before (vs KKR) he struck it through extra-cover – maybe the best shot of the match. Head was on top of the ball. The next delivery, his head was almost in the same position as the previous ball, but the line was completely different – it was coming down from middle and off, angling into middle and leg,” Lara who has scored over 10,000 runs in Tests and ODIs said.
“That is an issue we know that a lot of right-handed batsmen, get on the front foot and fall over. Just need to maybe wait a little bit longer, keep a stiller head and have that balance so that you can go down the track, instead of going towards the off stump when the ball is angled towards leg,” he further observed.
Lara was not particularly pleased with the way Glenn Maxwell went about his business either. Maxwell scored just 10 off 17 and Lara reckons that the Australian batsman was mentally not in the game.
“You look at Maxwell – he looked disgusted, he looked frustrated and all of a sudden he was back in the pavilion. That looked to me like a guy who was mentally not there, willing to handle the battle at hand,” Lara said.
RCB will look to bounce back in the next match when they take on three-time IPL winners Chennai Super Kings (CSK) on September 24. KKR, on the other hand, face defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI) in two days' time.