RCB has been one of the most dangerous teams over the years. Defeating them is like almost defeating Australian team of the early 2000’s. Dangerous openers, solid middle order, a batting depth till no.8 and some of the best bowlers made this side really difficult to defeat led by Kohli who has been a consistent scorer for his team. Every year, seeing them in the play-off and further qualifications is a default thing but this year has been an exception with Kohli’s men in red getting defeated more than they won this season. Even though they seem to be coming back to form, but the way they started with as many as 7 defeats so far shocked everyone. Even though they have won the last few games keeping their play-off hopes alive, at one point RCB had lost first 6matches out of the 8 they played and it certainly made this season one of the worst in their IPL History. Here can be some possible reasons for the failure of RCB this season.
Change in Momentum in the dressing room-
Despite being a world class team, Kohli and his boys kept on losing since the beginning of the tournament. The entire momentum in the squad was lost and the motivation alongwith confidence levels were drastically down after a string of losses. Even teams who have struggled over the years to defeat them have this season defeated them which left behind a bit of “Giving up”attitude amongst the boys. Plus this year RCB played with almost too many new faces and hence team bonding and that co-ordination takes time to gel up. This required the skipper to pump up the boys again and hopefully they are doing a good job past few matches with as usual ABD and Kohli leading from the front.
Too much of dependency on Kohli and ABD-
It is not a surprising fact that Kohli and ABD have scored more than 55% of the team runs this season with the remaining 9 players contributing to the 45% of runs. All the 6 matches which they have won, a major role and contribution have been by ABD and Kohli which is quite a worrying factor in the team. Even Moeen Ali who finally fired against SRH a few days ago with a hard hitting 65 said in the post match presentation that to win, we can’t just rely on two players and we all need to contribute which says a lot about the current situation in the RCB team.
Lack of execution of plans
RCB for almost 5-6years had a same squad but since the team this year had many new faces, it took time for the players to fall in line with the skipper and the senior players. At crucial junctures in many matches, the loopholes were quite evident with Kohli nodding his head that things are not going according to his way. The plans were not getting executed as decided and this helped the opposition to take full advantage of them.
Like literally? How can you throw away a world class T20 Batsman, a player who has made you win hundreds of matches single handedly out of the side. A player who has been RCB’s top run getter over the last decade with the highest strike rate and the most number of sixes. A player who can dismantle any team’s bowling attack and end the short careers of newcomer bowlers.
Gayle is also the world’s most destructive T20 player who has fired in every T20 Tournaments. Plus his presence at the top of the order made a world of a difference to RCB. Just imagine now you don’t have to face Gayle but bowl to Parthiv Patel when you are facing RCB! That itself is a confidence booster for the bowlers and his axing has left RCB in big trouble as those quick starts and big knocks have shied away from RCB. What’s more Gayle who was insulted to the core and was made a mockery in the IPL Auctions where he was bought for mere 2crores by Punjab after no one bought him gave a fitting reply to his ex-team with 368runs so far at an average of 46.00 in 10 matches which also included a big century.
Middle Lower Order crisis
As it has been the case, when you talk about top order, Parthiv has not exactly created much of an impact while Mandeep Singh, Grandhomme, Sarfaraz and Moeen apart from the last few matches have not scored runs this seaon. The middle and the lower middle order choked out in the death overs with only Kohli and ABD remaining consistent with the bat so far. This has resulted in defeats for RCB not only while chasing but while also batting first with an aim of making a big total.
Thrashing in the death overs
Umesh did showed some sparks of brilliance this tournament but overall the RCB bowlers have given away more than 11runs per over in the last 4 overs. The bowlers have gone for a thrashing with opposition batsmen managing to score big in the last session. Grandhomme and Siraj both have leaked runs at the death while Umesh has also been vulnerable. Chahal on the other hand is effective only between 8 to 15overs while Southee has been the lone warrior this season. So RCB definitely needs a bowler like Zaheer Khan in the side who can bring solidity and mentorship amongst the bowlers. Definitely ZAK is also missed a lot like Dilshan, Gayle amongst other big names who are now not playing for RCB.
Making Mccullum sit!
Like really? You have a beast at your disposal resting in the cage doing literally nothing and you are sending sheeps on the battlefield to fight with the other animals in the jungle. Mccullum-the same player who has the fastest T20 hundred, Fastest Test Hundred, most number of sixes, highest strike rate and one of the most prolific openers of IPL who once scored a 64ball 158* setting the grounds on fire. How can you make him sit and give unlimited chances to players like Mandeep Singh who has hardly scored more than 150runs in 12-13 matches he has played in the entire season of IPL!
Editor Haineel Shah