Kolkata: Royal Challengers Bangalore batsman Chris Gayle has said the combination of Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers is like superheroes Batman and Superman working together. Gayle's comments came after the duo lit up the Indian Premier League once again on Monday night, with some dazzling strokeplay helping RCB defeat Kolkata Knight Riders.
"Those two guys are playing like 'Batman and Superman'. They are in the form of their lives, especially Kohli. They should continue pressing the gas, don't ease up and fill their boots with as much runs as possible. They are doing a phenomenal job for RCB," Gayle said in the post-match media conference.
With 1,349 runs from 12 matches, Kohli and De Villiers seem to be unstoppable and are the top two leading run-getters of the tournament. Their amazing form has swung the fortunes of Royal Challengers Bangalore, who routed two-time champions KKR by nine wickets. This came just two days after their stellar show against Gujarat Lions, where they ran riot with a record 229-run partnership in a colossal 144-run win.
On Monday, Kohli (75 not out) and De Villiers (59 not out) made short work of KKR's 183/5 to romp home with eight balls to spare. "It's fantastic, they (Kohli and AB) are batting under pressure as well. Credit must go to both of them. Kohli leading from the front is even better. Overall, it's a great team effort. Those guys have contributed in all 12 games so far. Hopefully, they can continue again," Gayle added.
With three centuries and five fifties and a tally of 752 runs, 'Orange Cap' holder Kohli has lifted an otherwise lacklustre IPL and in the process surpassed Chris Gayle's 2012 record of 733 runs in a single IPL season. Describing Kohli as a complete cricketer, Gayle said the Indian Test captain should go past 1,000-run mark. "I must congratulate him to achieve such a thing in IPL so far. With two more games, maybe he can get close to 1,000 runs," he said.
Decoding Kohli's success, Gayle said it's his hunger to better his previous performances that has been the key to his success. "It's always about determination. He (Kohli) is a person who is never satisfied. He always actually wants to better his last performance, which is good. For any batsman wanting to better your last performance, you keep building on that, especially when you're in good form, capitalise on that and cash in on it as much as possible," Gayle said. "He's a doing a great job. It is not always about power hitting, but it is about the right timing, shot selection. He is very fit as his running between the wickets bears testimony and while on the field as well. He is a complete cricketer."
RCB have come within sniffing distance of the play-offs, jumping to fifth place and would need to win their remaining two matches against Kings XI Punjab and Delhi Daredevils to keep their hopes alive. Gayle said they will be a threat to other teams if they make the final-four. "Inshallah (God willing)," Gayle said, when asked if they would qualify. "Hopefully, we win these two games, which is very important for us. The rest will take care of itself. We just need to come out and keep firing in these two
games and then we actually see where we end up. If we do get to sneak into the play-offs, it's dangerous for other teams."
The RCB opener himself exploded to form with a 31-ball-49 that set up the chase before AB-Kohli show and Gayle said he was happy for the fans. "I'm more happy for the fans today rather than Chris Gayle getting those runs. I'm glad to be back among runs. Something small but you have to accept that nothing has been big so far."
Updated Date: May 17, 2016 11:49 AM