IPL 2020: AB de Villiers Below Washington and Dube? Virat Kohli Explains and Defends Decision
Why did AB de Villiers bat at No. 6, below Washington Sundar and Shivam Dube? That was the question on everyone's minds as Royal Challengers Bangalore lost to Kings XI Punjab by eight wickets in their IPL 2020 match in Sharjah.
- Cricketnext Staff
- Updated: October 16, 2020, 7:39 AM IST
Why did AB de Villiers bat at No. 6, below Washington Sundar and Shivam Dube? That was the question on everyone's minds as Royal Challengers Bangalore lost to Kings XI Punjab by eight wickets in their IPL 2020 match in Sharjah. Batting first, RCB made 171 for 6 with de Villiers walking in only in the 17th over. He fell for 2 off 5. Left-handed Washington Sundar and Shivam Dube were sent up the order above de Villiers with KXIP having two legspinners in M Ashwin and Ravi Bishnoi.
After the match, Virat Kohli explained the decision, saying: "We had a chat, there was a message about left-hand right-hand combination because they had two leggies. Sometimes decisions you take don't come off and this was one of those nights. But we're pretty happy with the decisions we took especially in the batting. I think 170+ was a decent score on this pitch," he said at the post-match presentation.
"The idea (to promote Washington and Dube) was to get the eye in and then start hitting. But we were not able to put them under pressure. They bowled well, the pitch didn't allow us to play our shots."
Despite the late drama where KXIP took it too deep, the game was never in RCB's hands as Punjab remained in full control. Kohli said the small dimensions of the ground was not an excuse for the poor bowling performance.
"It's not a great ground for bowlers but that's not an excuse. We take a lot of pride as a bowling side, but tonight was one of those nights. We have to take responsibility and apply the next time. Few positives always from the games that you lose as well and some learnings from the games you win. We now have to go back to the drawing board," he said.
KXIP needed 7 off 12 balls with nine wickets in hand, but somehow took it to 1 off 1 before Nicholas Pooran hit Yuzvendra Chahal for a six to finish things. Kohli said there was no conversation between him and Chahal in the last over, where KXIP needed 2.
"It was quite surprising, we thought the game might finish in the 18th over but it went down to the wire," he said.
"There was no conversation between Yuzi (Chahal) and me to be honest. Only in the last ball we had a conversation, and he wanted to bowl it a bit full. Credit to Nicholas, we didn't expect him to step out. Game should have finished by the 18th over and it didn't. They let us come back a little bit."