Former Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir lashed out at Rajasthan Royals (RR) after they made an extremely incompetent attempt and were thrashed by the Mumbai Indians (MI) by eight wickets.
Battered by MI, RR dropped to 90 for 9 in their 20 overs. They then let MI dominate with the bat and the chase was done and dusted in 8.2 overs.
Gambhir analyzed RR’s horror show and concluded that the franchise deserved to be knocked out after the way he turned out to MI.
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“When you play this type of cricket, this is what you deserve. You can’t expect to qualify for the play-offs if you play your worst game when it’s tough. This is where it matters most and it comes down to how much mental strength you have. This is where you can tell boys from men,” Gambhir told ESPN Cricinfo, lashing out at RR.
Gambhir, a former India opener, opined that MI proved that there were no demons on the field the way they hit. According to him, the gap between the teams was clear in Sharjah.
“You should never judge the surface before both teams have played on it. Mumbai Indians made it look so easy and it looked like a very good wicket. That just goes to show how much difference there is in the quality of both attacks. They (RR) didn’t look like the side that was in the running for qualifying. No way,” Gambhir added.
Evin Lewis scored the highest score for RR with 24, but no other batter could reach 20. For MI, Nathan Coulter-Nile and James Neesham stood out with marks of 4 for 14 and 3 for 12 respectively.
“Keeping and opening Ishan Kishan makes Mumbai a more balanced team” – Gautam Gambhir
MI made a change at the top of the order for Tuesday’s game and the move worked brilliantly as Ishan Kishan crushed an unbeaten 50 in 25 balls.
Speaking of Kishan’s achievements, Gambhir claimed that his presence in the team as opener goalkeeper gives MI more stability. He said:
“Ishan Kishan grabbed his chance with both hands and played really well. He actually played out a girl and everyone was talking about getting aggressive. He played some great shots and will get a lot of confidence from here.”
Gambhir further commented on MI’s team combination:
“Keeping and opening Ishan Kishan makes Mumbai a much more balanced team. He can do the job Quinton de Kock did. And now they can have Jimmy Neesham, who bowled really well and proved his selection was the right one. Suddenly they look like an IPL winning side again.”
MI will face Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in their final IPL 2021 league game on Friday, October 8. They will have to win the game by a wide margin and hope the other results will find their way to qualify for the playoffs as the fourth team.