Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) batting coach Wasim Jaffer has said that the franchise is missing the services of Chris Gayle badly. KXIP is languishing at the bottom of the IPL 2020 points table, having won just one of their seven matches so far.
Chris Gayle has not taken part in a single game this IPL season. Head Coach Anil Kumble had said last Thursday that the 41-year-old was set to be part of the playing XI against Sunrisers Hyderabad, but was ruled out due to a stomach bug.
While speaking to Times of India, Wasim Jaffer expressed hope that Chris Gayle would be available for the side's next encounter against Royal Challengers Bangalore.
“We are missing him. He was supposed to play the last two or three games but he, unfortunately, suffered the upset stomach. He was hospitalised. He is fit now. Hopefully, for the next game, I can see him playing straightaway,” the KXIP batting coach said.
Jaffer also lauded Chris Gayle as a match-winner and said that his inclusion would give a lot of confidence to KXIP as a team.
“Players like Gayle do make a difference. If he is in form, he can put a lot of fear among the bowlers and gives the team confidence. He can win a game on his own. He looks hungry when he bats,” Jaffer said.
Losing some close games earlier in the tournament may hurt KXIP, feels Wasim Jaffer
Wasim Jaffer also said that the close games KXIP lost earlier may end up hurting them later in the tournament. The IPL 2014 runners-up had lost to Rajasthan Royals and Kolkata Knight Riders from winning positions, while also failing to defeat Delhi Capitals in a match that went to the Super Over.
“I think some close games that we lost. The games we lost against Delhi Capitals, Rajasthan Royals and Kolkata Knight Riders. Those close games can hurt you. I don't think we have played that badly. We need a little luck. I am hoping the tide will change," Jaffer added.
Following a poor first half of IPL 2020, KXIP will now have to win at least six out of their next seven games for a chance to qualify for the playoffs. However, Jaffer believes they have enough ammunition to achieve this feat. He said:
“We have to stay positive. We have no time left. We have to win at least 6 out of 7 matches. But I think if we get a couple of wins straight away, the tables can turn. Cricket is a funny game, anything can happen. We have talented players in our team. They can change the course of the game at any point of time.”
KXIP face RCB, who are at third place in the IPL 2020 points table, at Sharjah on Thursday.Published 15 Oct 2020, 16:34 IST