Former India cricketer and former Kolkata Knight Riders skipper Gautam Gambhir was left fuming with Eoin Morgan’s captaincy after Maxwell and AB de Villiers powered Royal Challengers Bangalore to 204/4 by the end of 20 overs in the 10th match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021.
Morgan gave mystery spinner Varun Chakravarthy the second over of the match in which he picked the wickets of RCB skipper Virat Kohli (5) and Rajat Patidar (1) while giving away just 3 runs. But he was taken off the attack and did not come on to bowl before the 7th over.
Actually, Morgan decided to bring a change in bowling and bring in Shakib in place of Varun despite Chakravarthy’s over. Maxwell and AB de Villiers’ smash-fest set a 200+ target for KKR and that is what irked Gambhir as he questioned the tactics of Morgan, who probably wanted to save Chakravarthy overs for AB de Villiers.
Adding that the in-form batsman, Glenn Maxwell was in early, Gambhir opined that if Morgan had allowed Chakravarthy to bowl his second consecutive over, he might have got rid of Maxwell, and the game would have been done and dusted then and there.
“Virat Kohli was a big wicket, no doubt about it. But that has to be the weirdest kind of captaincy I have ever seen in my life. Someone taking two wickets in the first over, and then does not get to bowl the next one. Probably when you know the in-form batter is in. You could have probably seen the game in the first six overs, had Varun Chakravarthy had picked the third wicket or dismissed Glenn Maxwell. This game could have been over there and then,” Gambhir, who led KKR to two IPL titles during his cricketing days, said on Star Sports after RCB’s innings.
Gambhir further added that if an Indian captain had made such a blunder, people would have got their daggers out.
“I am happy that an Indian captain did not make this blunder. Because a lot of people would have actually got their daggers out had an Indian captain made this call. That was probably the most ridiculous captaincy I have ever seen,” Gambhir said.
“I can’t explain that. Because there is no terminology for it – when someone has taken two wickets, and an in-form batter is in and you take off your wicket-taking option in the next over,” he signed off.
Morgan let RCB off the hook in the powerplay and paid the price for it as Glenn Maxwell and AB de Villiers powered their team to 204 for 4 after electing to bat first at the MA Chidambaram Stadium, where 4 out of 5 matches this season have been won by the team batting first.