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IPL 2020: Kings XI Punjab do not have a gun death bowler in their playing XI or in their reserves - Aakash Chopra

Sheldon Cottrell has not had the best of times for Kings XI Punjab
Sheldon Cottrell has not had the best of times for Kings XI Punjab
Kartik Iyer
Modified 29 Sep 2020, 17:46 IST

Former Indian opener Aakash Chopra has opined that Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) could be in a spot of bother as they lack a gun death bowler in their entire squad for IPL 2020.

He made this observation while reviewing the Punjab-based franchise's harrowing defeat at the hands of Rajasthan Royals (RR) in a video shared on his YouTube channel.

While talking about the Kings XI Punjab batting effort, Aakash Chopra lauded the excellent knock played by Mayank Agarwal in the company of KL Rahul.

"KXIP opened the batting with KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal. The latter deserves hundred marks for scoring the first IPL century of his career and the manner in which he did that."

He highlighted that Mayank Agarwal's enterprising knock had forced KL Rahul, the centurion from the last match, to play a supporting role.

"At the other end, there was a batsman who had scored an unbeaten 132 runs in the previous match. Mayank told him to be the hero's brother and that he was the hero today."

The renowned commentator praised the Kings XI Punjab captain for keeping the team's interests foremost and giving as much strike as possible to Mayank Agarwal.

"Rahul also needs to be appreciated for saying that Mayank was playing well and that he will play second fiddle and take singles to give him the strike. There was no ego because it is a team game. The two of them helped Punjab reach a score of 223 runs."

Coming to Rajasthan Royals' chase, Aakash Chopra was effusive in his praise for Sanju Samson's clean striking of the ball, that had gone a long way in helping the Steve Smith-led side chase down the 224-run target set by Kings XI Punjab.

"Then comes Steve Smith, but Sanju Samson was even more important than Steve Smith. He is batting as though he has come set from India. He converted the cricket ground into a golfing range. He deserved a century, although he did not get that but he played a critical role in Rajasthan winning this game."

The 43-year-old pointed out that Rahul Tewatia had put the last nail in Kings XI Punjab's coffin by smashing Sheldon Cottrell for five sixes in an over.

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"And then comes Sheldon Cottrell and Rahul Tewatia hits 5 sixes in an over. Rahul Tewatia, very very well done."

Aakash Chopra on Kings XI Punjab's bowling woes

Mohammed Shami failed to deliver the goods in the death overs for Kings XI Punjab
Mohammed Shami failed to deliver the goods in the death overs for Kings XI Punjab

Aakash Chopra then stated that Kings XI Punjab do not have a potent death bowler, with their big-ticket signing Sheldon Cottrell not proficient in bowling at that stage.

"Kings XI Punjab do not have strength in their bowling. Sheldon Cottrell, overseas bowler, but he is not a gun death bowler. He is not in the level of Bumrah, Jofra or Rabada."

He observed that Mohammed Shami is also not renowned for his death-bowling skills.

"Mohammed Shami is also not exactly a perfect gun death bowler. He is not a gun death bowler for India as well."

The former KKR player added that James Neesham is not a great bowler in the Powerplay or in the latter stages of the innings.

"You play Jimmy Neesham. He is also an all-rounder who neither bowls in the Powerplay or at the death. So you have problems."

Aakash Chopra signed off by stating that Kings XI Punjab's death bowling could be a huge area of concern for them, with none of their reserve bowlers also fitting the bill.

"Kings XI Punjab will have to think how to save themselves as the ones sitting out - Hardus Viljoen or Chris Jordan - nobody is actually your gun death bowler. So this is a problem in front of them and I will be very closely observing how they are going to address it."

The Kings XI Punjab death bowling let them down badly in yesterday's IPL 2020 defeat against the Rajasthan Royals. They were unable to defend 51 runs in the last three overs, with Sheldon Cottrell becoming their second bowler after Chris Jordan to concede 30 runs in an over in this IPL.

Published 28 Sep 2020, 11:40 IST
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