Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) opener Martin Guptill stated that his side would bank upon the new-found momentum gained after thrashing Delhi Daredevils (DD) in their last tie in Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017. Currently languishing in the middle of the points table, KXIP need to carry on with the winning momentum if they are to qualify for the playoffs. Ahead of their next clash versus Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), Guptill also revealed that he is relishing his time opening the innings with a calm customer in form of South Africa’s Hashim Amla. KXIP, placed fifth with 8 points from 9 games, would be eager to post a comprehensive victory over their struggling opponents to stay relevant till the business end of the league stage. Full Cricket Scorecard, Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Kings XI Punjab, IPL 2017, Match 43
“We started off very well but unfortunately lost some matches in the middle. That can happen in cricket. We lost a few games, which cost us. We have played a couple of good games recently. We are looking to put up a good performance and get another victory,” Guptill was quoted as saying by PTI. On being questioned on how tough it would be to face a team like RCB, who have nothing to lose being out of the playoffs race, the New Zealander said, “They are a dangerous side. If you look through their line-up, the whole way down, they have got match winners everywhere. Yeah, we have to play extremely well tomorrow and put our plans in place to negate their tag of being match winners. It is going to be tough game and we have to be on our toes to take them down.”
Guptill also believes his team would like to get hold of the conditions in Bengaluru and adapt quickly with a string of low-scoring games being witnessed at M Chinnaswamy Stadium in IPL 10 so far. ”There has been low-scoring games. We have to take this into account. Once we go out in the middle tomorrow, we will assess what is happening with bat and bowl and hopefully, adapt quickly”, added the Kiwi opener.
Guptill also hinted that KXIP have a full squad to choose from with no major injuries to any of their key players. The 30-year-old defended the bowlers by saying, “They are professionals and know what needs to be done. The training here could put them in good stead and help them putting a good performance tomorrow.” He also added that rubbing shoulders with international players like Amla, David Miller and Shaun Marsh makes it easier to fit into the scheme of things for any side.
“We play with so many different people around the world these days and you get to know those guys. When we get to know people around the world, it makes it lot easier for players from different countries to get fit into the scheme of things,” Guptill told. He was in praise of his opening partner Amla and termed him as a ‘chilled out’ personality in the middle. ”Hashim obviously is a world-class player and a bit of a legend. It is pretty awesome batting with him. He is chilled out, just goes about doing his thing, a trait which rubs on when you are in the middle with him,” he concluded.