Kings XI Punjab star batsman Chris Gayle has so far played three games for the franchise in IPL 2020, all of which they have won. Kings XI Punjab has sparked a resurgence of their faltering campaign by three consecutive victories by defeating the likes of Royal Challengers Bangalore, Mumbai Indians, and Delhi Capitals. And Sachin Tendulkar has underlined Chris Gayle’s impact on the team.
Chris Gayle remained out of the side in the first few games of Kings XI Punjab due to Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul batting well at the top. The management somehow slotted the southpaw, batting at number three without disrupting the prolific opening stand of Rahul and Agarwal. In the first game against the Royal Challengers, Gayle mustered a half-century while crafting useful cameos in the next two.
Sachin Tendulkar revealed that being one of the most experienced T20 players, Chris Gayle is a smart cricketer and will not go for the big shots every time. The 47-year old underlined that the West Indian batsman would milk singles off a bowler who is threatening and will go for the big shots against bowlers, who he finds weak. Tendulkar highlights that Gayle analyses the bounce and spin in the surface and strategize according to the same. Thus, being a designated six-hitter, the 40-year old will not try to hit every ball for a maximum.
“When it comes to Gayle, people only talk about his big-hitting that everyone knows. What many guys don’t know one thing that Gayle is a very very smart player. He is a big-hitter no doubt, but he is a smart player and a clever guy. When he finds threatening, who could get him out, he is prepared to play even sometimes an over where an odd single is scored. Then he will target one or two bowlers.
The other day, he targetted Tushar Deshpande and scored 26 runs off his over. So Gayle is a smart player. So, don’t think Gayle is going to go out at every ball, he doesn’t do that, he understands the surface, he reads the pace and the bounce of the surface and what the bowler is good at and when he realizes there is a bowler who I can target, he goes all out after them and that would be the strategy throughout the tournament because that is what I have noticed throughout. He is a smart guy,” Tendulkar told in a video in his official Twitter handle.
Chris Gayle has inserted plenty of energy into Kings XI Punjab: Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Tendulkar added that Gayle has boosted Kings XI Punjab through his positive stroke play and hard-hitting display. He remains confident that with a dangerous batting line-up consisting of Chris Gayle, KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, and Nicholas Pooran, there is life in their campaign and they will become a formidable side. The batting maestro believes that every victory inserts a lot of self-belief in the dressing room and driving the momentum in a tournament like IPL is crucial. Thus, everyone is eager to express themselves, which makes KXIP the team to beat.
“Well, he has brought a lot of energy in the team and there are certain players with the way they play, their style, the statement they make with the hard-hitting shots. It has a positive impact on the team and that is exactly what has happened. Although I know KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal have been batting well. Nicholas Pooran is another dangerous guy and the addition of Chris Gayle makes a dangerous batting line-up.
So, it’s not over yet. You never know, in this format, you only need the momentum to take you forward and Gayle has managed to do that for the team and with the other guys in the team, it’s not over yet for Kings XI Punjab. The energy what the dressing room brings after the victories, three back to back victories is infectious. Everyone feels it and everyone wants to express themselves and that is what I forsee. Kings XI Punjab is going to be a formidable team,” he added.