Mohali, May 4 : Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) skipper Ravichandran Ashwin has said that the reason for not qualifying for the playoffs was not 'being able to perform well in the powerplays' throughout the 12th edition of Indian Premier League. "One of the areas we've definitely lacked is the Powerplays, both with the ball and the bat. Last year, we had a great Powerplay batting with Chris (Gayle) and KL (Rahul) but this year we couldn’t get off to great starts obviously because the pressure was on them and they had to do a job," Ashwin told media after suffering a resounding defeat to Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by seven wickets here on Friday. The India off-spinner also asked his team to address the problem before the next season.
"We have to address this going into the next year because we’ve lost most games on Powerplay battles," Ashwin added.According to him, their spinners Varun Chakravarthy and Mujeeb-ur-Rahman's absence, who missed majority of the IPL due to injuries, hurt KXIP's campaign badly. "We had a few challenges going into this year from last year, we had a few options, we picked up a few people (at the auction) and they've got injured. So that's not ideally how we'd like to look at it," Ashwin said while talking about Chakravarthy. Talking about overseas bowlers, he said, "When you have overseas seamers and bowlers, you definitely bank on them."
"AJ ( Australian pacer Andrew Tye,) had a fantastic IPL last year but it's also about batsmen coming after him in different methods. He's definitely tried hard. It's not lack of efforts that he's not been very good this year. But I'm sure he will definitely get better as a cricketer, he's quite a smart cricketer, he tries to give everything on the field. These sort of phases are quite common in a cricket career but I'm sure he will learn from this," he further added.
Earlier in the day, riding on a brilliant unbeaten knock of 65 by young Shubman Gill and his 62-run opening wicket stand with Chris Lynn (46), KKR emerged clear winners against KXIP by seven wickets with two overs to spare in the 52nd crucial match in the cash-rich league at the IS Bindra PCA Stadium here.(UNI)