Royal Challengers Bangalore ended up losing to Sunrisers Hyderabad placed at the bottom of the table last night. Needing 142 for the win, RCB didn’t have the best of starts and lost three wickets really quickly. Although opener Devdutt Padikkal stuck around, he struggled with fluency and the ability to up the scoring run rate.
Padikkal could only manage 41 runs off 52 deliveries at a strike rate of 78.85. In contrast, Glenn Maxwell who was his partner in the middle for a while was striking at 160 and scored a 25-ball 40 before he got run out in a mix-up that involved Padikkal.
RCB coach Mike Hesson later admitted that in the second strategic time-out, he had a discussion with the southpaw and asked him to take the initiative and lift his strike rate. Things didn’t go well for the 21-year-old last night as he got dismissed while looking for a big shot. RCB eventually ended up losing the game by four runs.
“The fact that Maxi was going so well, it was a matter of playing second fiddle a little bit and rotating the strike. And he played that role really nicely. But as we saw, it got harder to score and harder to time. A few dot balls built up. The second timeout was round about the 15th over. It was more about, ‘Dev, you need to take the initiative here and take that pressure off the new batter.’
He played a couple of good shots and then holed out. He wasn’t quite able to flick the switch when he wanted. But it was a tough surface and it was an important innings for us, for the other guys to play around. But yes, he wasn’t quite able to get us over the line.”
Over the last couple of games, Royal Challengers Bangalore have promoted all-rounder Dan Christian to the number three position in the lineup. This move hasn’t worked out at all and Christian got dismissed easily in the last couple of matches against Punjab Kings and Sunrisers Hyderabad. Hesson admitted that the experiment was prompted by the need to get maximum runs and the team gave Christian the license to do so.
“We felt that the powerplay was probably the easiest time to score. So we gave Dan Christian a bit of a license in the last couple of games – just to go out, try and attack and get us ahead of the game. Obviously, it hasn’t worked on either occasion.”