IPL 2022: RCB didn’t rely only on retained players, build squad around them, says Mike Hesson
IPL 2022: Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) Director of Cricket Operations Mike Hesson said on Friday that the best part of the team’s season was not having to rely only on their retained players.
Royal Challengers Bangalore were eliminated from the tournament after Rajasthan Royals chased down the RCB target of 158 in 18.1 overs, thanks to an explosive century by Jos Buttler. With his 58-run knock, Rajat Patidar looked like the only significant threat for RCB throughout the game.
“If you rely solely on one or two players, you are not gonna make it to the playoffs. The beauty of our side is that we did not only rely on our retained players. We did build a squad around them but we did not have to rely on them during every game. The most pleasing aspect was that so many different players stood up,” said Hesson during a post-match conference.
Hesson commented on the match, saying that at the end of 15 overs, the side was in a strong position, with Maxwell and Patidar settling for 123/3.
“We were in a position to get 175, potentially 180. In the last three overs, Obed McCoy and Prasidh Krishna bowled well and we struggled to get any momentum. You do not want to get 30 off the last five, they probably left us 20 runs short,” he added.
Except for the match against RR that knocked them out of the tournament, Hesson agreed that the side’s death overs batting was superb throughout the season.
“There are a number of guys standing alongside Dinesh Karthik, who has been outstanding for us this season. Patidar (Rajat Patidar) has power, Shahbaz (Shahbaz Ahmed) has shown he has power, Lomror (Mahipal Lomror) has shown power,” he added.
Hesson said that non-established players like Rajat Patidar, Shahbaz Ahmed. And Mahipal Lomror have been significant positives for the team this season.
“From a bowling point of view, Harshal Patel was exceptional. DK came in and performed an incredibly tough role. We really struggled to get consistency. And he was probably one of the most consistent players at the back end of the innings. Josh Hazlewood was impressive and Wanindu Hasaranga got us many middle over wickets,” he added.
Although Mohammed Siraj did not have the finest tournament this time, the Director of Cricket Operations stated that he is still a good bowler.
“He did not get those new ball wickets, could not get the ball swinging and lost a bit of confidence. But he will bounce back,” he added.
Siraj didn’t have much luck this season, taking only 9 wickets at an average of 57.11 and a bad economy of 10.07.
Hesson noted that Virat Kohli improved during the season and seemed in terrific form in the final four or five games.
Kohli didn’t have the best IPL season this year. Despite scoring runs in the final few games, he finished with 341 runs in 16 games, a below-average 22.73 average, and two fifties. 73 is his best individual score this season.
He further said that he is pleased with the way the team gelled with each other this season.
“There are always things that you want to tweak. When you are knocked out, you find things to improve on,” he added.
When RCB were given the opportunity to bowl first, they scored 157/8 in their 20 overs, with Rajat Patidar leading the way with 58. Other important efforts came from Glenn Maxwell (24) and Faf Du Plessis (25) respectively. RR’s top bowlers Obed McCoy (3/23) and Prasidh Krishna (3/22). Chasing 158 proved to be relatively simple for RR, as Jos Buttler’s blistering 106 off 60 ensured. That his team reached the target in 11 balls and seven wickets.
Rajasthan Royals will now face Gujarat Titans in the finals on May 29 at Ahmedabad’s Narendra Modi Stadium. RR is playing in his first final in 14 years. The last time they reached the finals was in the league’s first season. When they defeated Chennai Super Kings by three wickets to win their first IPL title. In their first season, the Gujarat Titans also made it to the finals.
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