Mohali (Punjab): Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) captain R Ashwin maintained that the reason for not finishing in the top-four of the Indian Premier League (IPL) was the inability to perform in the Powerplays throughout the tournament.
“One of the areas we have definitely lacked is the Powerplay, both with the ball and the bat — in hindsight if we look at it. Because last year we had a great Powerplay batting with Chris (Gayle) and KL (Rahul) but this year we could not get off to great starts obviously because the pressure was on them and they had to do a job. But we have to address this going into the next year because we have lost most games on Powerplay battles,” Ashwin told media.
After facing an eight-wicket defeat at the hands of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) on Friday, Ashwin said the absence of Varun Chakravarthy and Mujeeb-ur-Rahman, who suffered a finger and shoulder injury, respectively; forced KXIP to look beyond their set plans.
“We have not been up to the ball-mark this year. We had a few challenges going into this year from last year, we had a few options, we picked up a few people (at the auction) and they have got injured.”
“So that is not ideally how we had liked to look at it. We definitely put our best team we could in the park and we have tried our best and there have been a lot of positives that have come out of this season,” he added.
The off-spinner said that KXIP were banking on Australia pacer Andrew Tye, the Purple-cap winner in 2018, to come in the destructive form in the ongoing edition. However, Tye returned with just three wickets in his five outings at an economy of more than 10.
“AJ (Tye) had a fantastic IPL last year but it is also about batsmen coming after him in different methods. He has definitely tried hard. It is not lack of efforts that he has not been very good this year. But I am sure he will definitely get better as a cricketer, he is quite a smart cricketer, and he tries to give everything on the field.
These sorts of phases are quite common in a cricket career but I am sure he will learn from this,” he said.