'Not getting enough assistance at home': Shakib rues unusually flat Eden Gardens pitch

Kolkata: Kolkata Knight Riders' left-arm spinner Shakib al-Hasan rued that their attack, heavily dependent on slow bowlers, is not getting enough assistance from the Eden Gardens pitch.

KKR's fate hangs in the balance after a demoralising nine-wicket defeat against Royal Challengers Bangalore on Monday. Admitting that the loss was a setback, the left-arm spinner said, "I can talk of myself and I would say yes, we are not getting that advantage (from the pitch). We are a spin dependent team, so we always expect some assistance at home. We have not been getting that till now. It's a bit disappointing for the players."

KKR captain Gautam Gambhir reacts after droppings a catch off Virat Kohli. BCCI

KKR captain Gautam Gambhir reacts after droppings a catch off Virat Kohli. BCCI

The two-time former champions face a 2015-like situation, as they need to win their remaining two matches to assure themselves a play-off berth, something they failed to achieve in their title defence last year. Out of six home matches this season, KKR have lost three — to Mumbai Indians, Gujarat Lions and the latest against Royal Challengers Bangalore.

A team that banks on three specialist spinners in Shakib, Piyush Chawla and Sunil Narine, KKR have failed to capitalise on home conditions at the Eden, as the 22-yard strip has been unusually flat this year. But the Bangladeshi all-rounder said they would bounce back to finish among top two. "To be honest, we cannot blame the pitch. We have enough quality players to win the matches on our own. Maybe, we didn't do well at home the way it is expected. But overall, we are in a good position. It's important to play the next two matches well."

Shakib also defended skipper Gautam Gambhir, who dropped an easy catch of Virat Kohli, who was then on 32. "I don't think it was a turning point. But since he was in good form, our chances would have been brighter had we not dropped the catch and de Villiers would have come under a bit more pressure. But I would never say we lost lost the match becasue of one catch. They had other batsmen who could have scored the runs. They (RCB) have quality batsmen. The way they scored runs, there was nothing much we could do. We tried our best but they played better cricket."


Published Date: May 17, 2016 02:59 pm | Updated Date: May 17, 2016 02:59 pm


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