Andy Flower claims Gayle's flaw acts as a hindrance to the team in conditions like those in Chennai. Batting at the MA Chidambaram Stadium hasn't been easy in the IPL 2021 so far, with the pitch assisting the bowlers.
Punjab Kings fell to a nine-wicket defeat against Sunrisers Hyderabad today. Batting first, the Punjab franchise was bowled out for just 120 in 19.4 overs. SRH, seeing a batting collapse this season, came up with a clinical performance to wrap up the game comfortably in the end.
Andy Flower said on pitches like in Chennai, it would be ideal for a team to have quick runners between the wickets. However, Andy Flower added that Chris Gayle has enough experience to overcome a situation like this.
"Chris Gayle has got tons of experience; he has scored a lot of runs in all formats of the game over the years," Flower told Sportskeeda in a virtual press conference. "He is going to do it (Score runs) slightly differently. He has got the power. We saw it early when Chris Gayle hit one of the seamers back over mid-on, and he certainly got the power where he can catch up. Just didn't stay in long enough. Got out to a top-class performing Rashid Khan. But ideally, yes, i think on a pitch like this, the boundaries are hard to come by, so hitting the ball in the gap, playing with the spin as often as possible and running hard.... It was the sort of template that David Warner and Jonny Bairstow really used well."
Jonny Bairstow, who is known to provide quickfire starts, batted conservatively and scored a 56 off 63 balls to guide his team to victory. Meanwhile, Chris Gayle managed 15 off 17 balls before being adjudged LBW off the bowling of Rashid Khan.
"We're going to have to play with more skill" - Andy Flower
KL Rahul and his men will have their task cut out when they take on the defending champions Mumbai Indians next in Chennai. Andy Flower said that PBKS' batting group would have to show more skill to overcome the challenge.
"For our whole batting group, we're going to have to play with more skill and more understanding of these conditions and what to do in these conditions when we come back in two days time." Flower added.
After winning their opening game of the season against the Rajasthan Royals, the Punjab Kings have now suffered three back-to-back defeats. With someone like Dawid Malan waiting in the wings, it remains to be seen whether Chris Gayle will play in the upcoming game against the Mumbai Indians.