Kolkata Knight Riders slumped to their second straight defeat of the season when they lost to Royal Challengers Bangalore by 38 runs on Sunday.
RCB skipper Virat Kohli chose to bat first after winning the toss but KKR took the early advantage as Varun Chakravarthy claimed the wickets of Kohli and Rajat Patidar in his very first over. It was only the second over of the innings as well and new batsman Glenn Maxwell was obviously under pressure.
The ideal call at that point would have been to give Chakravarthy another over but KKR skipper Eoin Morgan gave that over to Shakib instead and allowed Maxwell to breathe easy at the crease. The Australian went on to smash 78 off just 49 deliveries, and AB de Villiers joined him later to score 76* off 34 himself, to power RCB to a massive score of 204/4 on a challenging Chennai track.
KKR never got going in their chase and they were restricted to a total of 166/8 by the RCB bowlers. Former India batsman and KKR captain Gautam Gambhir was very critical of Morgan for the way he handled Chakravarthy inside the powerplay.
“Virat Kohli was a big wicket, no doubt about it. But that has to be the weirdest kind of captaincy I have ever seen in my life. Someone taking two wickets in the first over, and then does not get to bowl the next one,” Gambhir said on Star Sports after RCB’s innings.
“Probably when you know the in-form batter is in. You could have probably seen the game in the first six overs, had Varun Chakravarthy had picked the third wicket or dismissed Glenn Maxwell. This game could have been over there and then,” he added.
Gambhir also went on to say that he was happy that the ‘blunder’ wasn’t made by an Indian captain as it would have led to a lot of criticism and blame game.
“I am happy that an Indian captain did not make this blunder. Because a lot of people would have actually got their daggers out had an Indian captain made this call. That was probably the most ridiculous captaincy I have ever seen,” Gambhir said.
“I can’t explain that. Because there is no terminology for it – when someone has taken two wickets, and an in-form batter is in and you take off your wicket-taking option in the next over,” he concluded.