Rajasthan Royals have managed to reasonably revamp their squad ahead of the upcoming season of the lucrative league. They have retained only a handful of players and appointed a new head coach to turn their fortunes around for the next season. Looking forward to the auction next month, new coach Andrew Mcdonald has made it clear that he is keen on strengthening the bowing line-up of Rajasthan Royals.
The Victorian hasn’t had a fruitful international career, featuring in only four Test matches. However, he is one of the most sought after coaches in the world. His coaching resume spells leading the Victoria state team to the Sheffield Shield title and ushering Melbourne Renegades to their maiden title in the last season of the Big Bash League. The veteran has also played for Royal Challengers Bangalore and Delhi Daredevils in the past seasons.
Speaking about his strategy for the next season, the 38-year old believes that in T20 cricket having the bowling strength can go a long way. Mcdonald was of the belief that the 120 balls that is thrown upon the batsman are the most controllable. If defended those 120 balls and curb the run-flow, it boosts the chances to score more than the opposition.
“One of my key philosophies as a coach in particular in T20 cricket is having the bowling strength. I say the game is 240 balls of problems and the 120 with the ball you can actually control a little bit more. The other 120 you face with the bat is more a reaction to what’s coming forward, so it’s quite instinctive batting.” Mcdonald said as quoted by News18.
“The controllable for us are those 120 balls while bowling and that’s something we would look to strengthen. If we could defend those 120 balls, it gives us a chance to score more than our opposition. I know that sounds really simple but it’s a philosophy I’ve adopted across the teams I have been part of.” he added further.
Mcdonald aims to shake off the underdog tag:
Although the Aussie coach is unfazed by the underdogs’ tag, he believes that to be known as a consistent team, they have to take it step by step. He believes that the team needs to build itself consistently by winning matches to have a chance at winning the title. The veteran is firm on people seeing Rajasthan Royals not as underdogs but a worthy contender in a few years down the line.
“When you start to get that favourites tag, it means you are being consistent for a period of time. Rajasthan have made it to the playoffs four, so there’s probably a lack of consistency from year to year. Therefore the underdogs tag is going to stick. I would like to envisage in three year’s time that people aren’t talking about us as an underdog, they are speaking about us as a consistent team that’s improved year on year and there is a way and style of cricket they play that will put them in top 4 at the end of the season. That’s how you shake the underdogs tag,” he said further.