Former India spinner Pragyan Ojha heaped praise on young Devdutt Padikkal after his maiden Indian Premier League (IPL) hundred fired Royal Challengers Bangalore to a 10-wicket win over Rajasthan Royals in Match 16 on Thursday.
Padikkal and his skipper Virat Kohli stitched a record-opening partnership of 181 runs to help RCB gun down the target of 178 in 16.3 overs against RR at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. The win was RCB’s fourth in a row and they reclaimed the top spot on the IPL 2021 points table after the match.
“Virat Kohli, yes there was no two ways about it that he will not enjoy on this wicket. But Devdutt Padikkal never made us feel that there was Virat Kohli batting at the other end,” Ojha said on Sports Today.
The two-time IPL winner and former MI spinner also slammed the Rajasthan Royals batsmen, especially their top-order, after yet another flop-show in the tournament.
“And I’m very sure the RR top-order, after watching these two guys, they would have realised their own mistakes on a wicket like the Wankhede because if you consistently lose your top-order like this in the powerplay then every time the middl-order walks in, they are doing the damage-control first and then they are looking to get the runs on the board for the team.
“Every time your middle-order is in that kind of pressure, it will be a trouble for you. Everybody has to handle it (pressure) well. Initially their middl-order was trying to do damage control because they had already lost 3 wickets and then after that slowly they went into a position where they could get 177.
“They would realise that had their top-order got a good start, they would have reached at least 220.”
Ojha went on to add that RR, who are languishing in last place with 1 win from 4 matches, won’t go much further in IPL 2021 if they don’t all up their socks soon enough.
“If you see their batting, the way Shivam Dube got out, I couldn’t understand the shot. Just before the drinks break Sangakkara walks in and suddenly he plays a very poor shot. If you see their bowling, lot of times there was no communication between the fielder and bowler, they were out of sync. If this carries on I think RR will be out of the tournament,” Ojha said.