5 reasons why KXIP have failed this year
Strange things happen in cricket. The 20 over format seems short but in cricket even that short time-frame sees wild swings. Momentum and confidence are everything in T20 and if there is one team that is the epitome of this observation, it is a passionate owner’s unlucky team, Kings XI Punjab.
Year after year, we have seen PreityZinta supporting her team, only to see them falter at various stages.
In 2014, Kings XI Punjab was everyone’s second favorite team. They played a fresh brand of cricket, fearless (now a very common buzzword), entertaining and confident. Under George Bailey, who looked cool, calm and composed at most times. KXIP went from strength to strength, making it to the IPL Final where their dream run ended at the hands of Kolkata Knight Riders.
But until then, KXIP seemed like the perfect team with flashy openers, powerful middle order, a couple of cool finishers, a good spinner and two good new-ball bowlers. It has to be a champion team to beat Chennai Super Kings thrice in the same IPL. A year later, the same team finished with the wooden spoon, long before No.1 to No.6 positions on the leader board could be decided.
Here are five reasons that probably led to their fall:
1. Glenn Maxwell’s Bad Form
Glenn Maxwell scored 552 runs in 2014 at an average of 34.5 and a strike-rate of 187.75. He smashed four half-centuries with a highest score of 95. This year he was at No.42 compared to last year’s No.3, on the leading run-scorers list.
In 11 games, Maxwell scored a mere 145 runs at an average of 13 and a strike-rate of 129 with not a single half-century. That stark contrast in their best batsman’s fortunes alone was enough for KXIP to lose quite a few games, games they won with ease last year.
2. No consistent run-scorers
Maxwell’s loss of form wasn’t the only reason why KXIP performed so poorly this year.
In 2014, KXIP had three players in the top 10 run-scorers of the tournament – Maxwell at No 3 with 552 runs at an average of 34.5 and a strike-rate of 187.75, VirenderSehwag at No 6 with 455 runs at 26.7 and a strike-rate of 144 and David Miller at No 7 with 446 runs at an average of 44.6 and a strike-rate of 149. WriddhimanSaha and Manan Vohra chipped in with 362 and 324 runs respectively with George Bailey registering seven not-outs with 257 runs.
This year, KXIP’s highest run-getter David Miller came in at No.14 with just 357 runs at an average of 32.45 and a strike-rate of 134. George Bailey was a distant second with 259 runs at No 26. Murali Vijay and Saha at 27 and 28 had 251 and 249 runs respectively.
That pretty much tells the story as to why KXIP never really won many this season. They hardly had anyone making runs with just one batsman in the top 20 run-scorers. That is quite a fall in one year.
It could be attributed to loss of form of both Maxwell and Sehwag. Miller, although in form, didn’t quite get the boost or the foundation he received last year with Sehwag and Maxwell setting it up for him previously. Manan Vohra hardly got any games up front to add to their woes, a tactical blunder that cost KXIP quite a bit.