There are not any serious concerns about the bowling attack – Wasim Jaffer after 56-run defeat against LSG
Wasim Jaffer, the batting coach for the Punjab Kings, backed the bowlers after the team’s crushing 56-run loss to the Lucknow Super Giants on Friday (April 28) at Mohali while Jaffer chose not to make too many assumptions about the bowling performance on an evening when the visitors scored the second-highest IPL total of all time.
Wasim Jaffer, the batting coach for the Punjab Kings, backed the bowlers after the team’s crushing 56-run loss to the Lucknow Super Giants on Friday (April 28) at Mohali.
Jaffer chose not to make too many assumptions about the bowling performance on an evening when the visitors scored the second-highest IPL total of all time. Kagiso Rabada, Arshdeep Singh, and Sam Curran, the lead seamers, conceded 144 runs between them in their 11 overs.
“Don’t think there are any serious concerns (about the bowling attack) because they had thrice defended scores in tough conditions,”opined Jaffer in the post-match press conference.
“Be it against Mumbai or Rajasthan, even in the earlier Kolkata game. The bowling unit has always performed for us this season. Today was one of those days when everything clicked for the opposition and we were a bit clueless. Our bowlers will come back strong.”
Lucknow was ruthless with the bat and the tempo was set right from the start by Kyle Mayers, as 74 came in the Power Play itself.
Thereafter, Ayush Badoni, Marcus Stoinis, and Nicholas Pooran made sure that the intention has never wavered. The pitch was perfect for batting, though. Jaffer admits that the bowlers’ execution may have been a little bit better.
“Perhaps we could have gone to Plan B a bit more. Like using the slower balls a lot more and using the longer boundary consistently. They (LSG) did this a lot more effectively and it worked for them. But again, most of their shots were clearing the boundary quite easily, so we have to give them credit for that.”
In hindsight, Shikhar Dhawan’s decision to bowl at the toss appeared to be a mistake given that teams batting first have won eight of the last 10 games but Jaffer defended his skipper’s call.
The 45-year-old also lavished praise on Lucknow’s batting performance while he preferred to treat the bowling performance as a one-off. The tourists continued to score runs after the frenetic power play, scoring 110 between overs 7-15.
“It is a trend for IPL sides to opt for chasing after winning the toss. Dew was a factor too. We had seen it during practice and that was a reason as well. But when the opposition gets to 257, it’s always tough to chase. They got a fast start in the power play and never slowed down at any stage. You have to give them credit.”
It was surprising to see Punjab not promote any of their big hitters with such a huge target to reach. The young Atharva Taide did make the most of his chance to bat at number three, but one of the big hitters was expected to come in first.
However, PBKS chose to stick to their usual procedure, a lot of their firepower arrived in the piece a little bit too late. Jaffer, though, didn’t agree with the consensus.
“Our top three is a fix and Taide is someone who always does well in the power play. We also wanted to maintain a left-right combination throughout. Also, someone like Livingstone hadn’t played a lot of cricket, Raza had done well for us and that’s why he was promoted. We thought that if we can get closer to the total, we have the power of Livingstone and Curran. As for Jitesh and Shahrukh, their roles are for the final five overs. Everyone did their best but it’s just unfortunate that we fell short by 56 runs.”