IPL 2020: Here's how the KKR camp reacted to humiliating loss against RCB?
Kolkata Knight Riders suffered their fifth loss of the season, as they stay in the fourth spot of the table, having also won five matches. KKR are former two-time champions of the Indian Premier League, having won their last title in 2014, under the leadership of Gautam Gambhir.
Former champions Kolkata Knight Riders' (KKR) average season continued, as they suffered a humiliating loss, by eight wickets, to Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in Match 39 of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020, in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday. They are currently placed in the fourth spot, having won and lost five each in 10 matches.
Winning the toss, KKR skipper Eoin Morgan elected to bat. However, they were off to a horror start, as they lost four wickets in the powerplay. It was Morgan, who played a brave knock of 30, while Mohammad Siraj's 3/8 restricted them to 84/8 in 20 overs. In reply, RCB had the psychological advantage, as despite losing two wickets, they chased it down with ease, in 14 overs.
Meanwhile, following the loss, the KKR camp was truly embarrassed, as Morgan regretted his decision to bat first. "Being 4/5 down early on isn't the position we wanted to be in. RCB bowled well and probably, looking at the conditions, we should have bowled first," he said after the defeat.
"We will learn our lessons and move in in the next game. It was a question of backing the young Indian guys, who showed glimpses of talent and potential. They (RCB bowlers) managed to exploit anything that was on offer and given the nature of the tournament, every time, you have to be at your best against every team," added Morgan.
KKR were without their Windies powerhouse Andre Russell and Sunil Narine in this tie, as Morgan expects to have them going forward. "Hopefully, they (Narine and Russell) will be available around the corner and we know when guys of that calibre, particularly all-rounders are available, things will be different. Hopefully, they will be available soon," he told.
Meanwhile, KKR head coach Brendon McCullum stated that their destiny is in their own hands, which could even lead them to the final. “This (loss) is going to affect a little bit in terms of our confidence. We need to work hard on ensuring our morale doesn’t drop, at the same time having those honest conversations around how we improve,” he said at the post-match press conference.
“But, I still firmly believe that we have a side which can be there later on in the tournament, come finals. We just need to improve slightly. We’re still fourth in the tournament, which is very fortunate for us. Destiny is still very much in our hands. We have just got to tighten up some of those areas where we’re deficient tonight and make sure we improve on our performance," added McCullum.
McCullum did praise Siraj and Chris Morris's performance with the ball, besides stating his frustration at the wicket. “I didn’t think there was a lot in the wicket. Siraj, obviously, bowled well and (Chris) Morris at times also. But, if anything, we were just a little timid in our approach. That’s just a bit frustrating because we spoke at length before the game, about trying to be positive and show some strong intent, so that’s something we’ll have to address in the next few days," he said.
“I just think we weren’t able to enter the game at any stage, none of our top-order batsmen were able to get anything going. Defending 85, you might just win one in 50 games. I think RCB were very good tonight. We’re very poor with bat in hand. You’re not going to win too many games from 40 for 6. But, we’ve got to bounce back, because we’ve got another game in a few days," McCullum further said.
“With the conditions being slightly challenging at times, you’ve got to find a way to still pick yourself up and try and get a result in the next game. For us, it’s about maintaining belief. As long as our morale stays high, and our belief within the dressing room stays high, then we have the talent within our setup, the intelligence and quality of players, to be able to go deep in the tournament," concluded McCullum.
KKR still have a chance to make it to the playoffs, provided they come up with winning performances in the remaining four games. They take on Delhi Capitals (DC) in their next clash on Saturday.