RR vs PBKS in IPL 2021: Punjab King’s Wasim Jaffer hopes for a winning start against RR & win close matches this season: Former India opener and Punjab Kings (PBKS) batting coach Wasim Jaffer believes the team needs to have a winning start against Rajasthan Royals on Monday night and keep the winning momentum going — clinching the close ties that they had lost by closest of margins.
“The challenge will be to start well. Once the tournament starts pressure will be off. I am hoping for a winning start against Rajasthan Royals. I hope we have learnt from our mistakes done in last season and apply ourselves from the very word go and maintain the momentum throughout. We had played very good cricket last season and we were centimeters away from winning,” Wasim Jaffer told Insidesport.co in a recent exclusive interview.
He further said: “We lost a few close matches that made all the difference. We lost matches by 1 run, 2 runs and by a very narrow margin. We should have won those matches. I am looking at positives. I hope we learn from our mistakes and apply ourselves from the very word go and maintain the momentum throughout. I am very optimistic that the team will reach the playoffs this year if not beyond.”
Reflecting on his team, PBKS batting coach said the batting looks more formidable than last year and the team seemed to be a more balanced team than ever before. “The top order looks all set with captain KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal and Chris Gayle all ready for the action and ably supported by middle order comprising Dawid Mala, Nicholas Pooran and Ishan Porel. Our opening pair of Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul has been a phenomenon for Punjab Kings last year before Chris Gayle joined in. Gayle gave us a great impetus at no 3. It was something new for him and the team. Gayle coming in at number 3 put pressure on the opponent team’s spinners and bowlers in the middle overs.”
Further elaborating, the former India opener said: “Mayank, KL & Gayle have scored runs heavily. The opening duo was in sublime form. They were our top player. I see no reason why the team would like to alter the batting order. Hopefully, we start with KL, Mayank & Gayle at no 3. I tend to believe we have one of the best top-order in the tournament. Our both the leggie are important, we have two quick bowlers who can bowl 145 km and we have very good all-rounders, a lot of option and depth are there in our team,” Jaffer observed.
In 2020 IPL season, captain KL Rahul was in sublime form scoring 670 runs in 14 matches while Mayank Aggarwal scored 424 runs in 11 matches. Chris Gayle who did not feature in the team’s scheme of things in the first half managed 288 runs in 7 matches.