Former South African cricketer and the current fielding coach of the Kings XI Punjab, Jonty Rhodes has stated that lack of match practice will be a prominent problem amongst the players in the initial phase of IPL 2020.
Rhodes, who returns to IPL 2020 as a coach after a two-year break, commented on the importance of having adequate game time. The South African emphasised the significance of match mindset for the players and how practice plays a crucial part in the outset of any tournament.
“I think from a skills point of view, batting wise, all the boys have their skills back, they are playing ramp shots in the nets and playing shots all around the ground, which is interesting because they could not practice much during the lockdown,” Rhodes said.
Attaining the match mindset for a tournament like IPL 2020 is very important: Rhodes
All the eight teams have been training rigorously, but the South African has shifted his focus on match practice rather than just nets.
“You tend to pick up the skills quickly, but it is the match practice or the lack of it that will take a while to get used to. Playing in the nets is one thing, if you can get the match mindset, especially in a tournament like the IPL, it is very important,” he added.
Rhodes stated that the management has decided to arrange a couple of side matches for the squad to reignite the match mindset amongst players following a prolonged break from cricket.
“We are trying to arrange one or two practice games just because of this reason (for match mindset). The skills have come back quickly. The balls are just flying out of the ground, and it is good to see the bowlers hitting the right areas,” he mentioned.
Rhodes holds an integral part in the Kings XI coaching setup and could prove to be a vital cog for them in IPL 2020. The thirteenth edition of the IPL is due to commence from the 19th of September.Published 07 Sep 2020, 11:42 IST