Cricket

IPL 2021: Gautam Gambhir says there's pressure on KL Rahul to play longer innings due to PBKS' middle-order issues

IPL 2021: Gautam Gambhir says there's pressure on KL Rahul to play longer innings due to PBKS' middle-order issues

Former Team India batsman Gautam Gambhir feels Punjab Kings are missing a player in the middle order who can bat deep and that's why there's pressure on openers KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal for a good start.

Speaking exclusively on Star Sports’ Select Dugout Gambhir said, “Another problem with Punjab Kings is that we keep mentioning how important it is for KL Rahul to score runs and at a very good strike-rate. The reason is, they have got players like Chris Gayle who would want to play at a similar tempo. You have got Nicholas Pooran who is very instinctive. Deepak Hooda is very instinctive. You have got Shahrukh Khan who is into his first season, so you have got experience of Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul.

"So, that’s the reason why KL Rahul was not batting at the strike-rate which he wanted to in the previous season. He got 600 runs, but he knew the kind off batting line-up he has got, he doesn’t have someone like an anchor who could anchor the innings, who probably could take the innings deep into the 17th or the 18th over."

Gambhir said the middle-order of Punjab Kings have players who are instinctive in nature and on certain days it might not work for the team.

"We know Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, all these guys are too instinctive. That is why there is a lot of responsibility on Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul to give them a good start and at a good strike-rate.”

KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal gave Punjab Kings a great start against Delhi Capitals but ended up losing the match by six wickets. Skipper Rahul scored a half-century but he played at a strike-rate of 119. Punjab's score of 195 in the first innings proved to be not enough for Delhi who reached the target with 10 balls to spare.

Updated Date: April 19, 2021 18:22:58 IST

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