The off-spinner bowled three overs – 7th, 9th, and 11th – in the Capitals’ defence of 148, and gave away just 14 runs without conceding a single boundary. Yet, to everyone’s surprise, Rishabh Pant, captaining the side in absence of Shreyas Iyer, removed Ashwin from attack despite the presence of two left hander’s in David Miller and Rahul Tewatia at the crease.
Instead, Marcus Stoinis was given the 13th over and was taken for 15 runs; Tom Curran followed it up with a 12-run over, which initiated the Royals’ comeback in the game. Even the coach, Ricky Ponting was left perplexed by Pant’s move and said that he will have a chat with the skipper about the same.
“Certainly, we will talk about this when we get together as a team. He (Ashwin) had bowled beautifully, bowling 3-0-14-0 and didn’t concede a boundary. He didn’t have a good first game, and he really worked hard in the past few days and adjusted to get things right in this game,” Ricky Ponting said at the post-match press conference.
“He bowled beautifully tonight, and it (not bowling his full quota) was a mistake on our behalf, something we will be talking about as a team later on,” he added.
We probably gave Morris a few too many slot balls: Ricky Ponting
Another mistake that the former Australia captain pointed out is that the pacers gave plenty of “easy balls” – such as the ones right in the slot for Chris Morris, who dispatched 4 sixes off the 7 hits by the Royals batsman.
Morris smashed 29 runs off the last 10 balls from Kagiso Rabada and Tom Curran as both the bowlers dished out poor balls allowing the South African to harrumph them for 4 sixes.
“We probably gave him a few too many easy balls, a few too many slot balls if you like. The length wasn’t quite where it needed to be. If you look at the replay of the game, if you bowled a reasonable yorker, he didn’t score off them. If it was back of a length, sort of, above stump high, he didn’t get hold of them either, especially with pace on the ball. We talked about how to bowl to him, but the execution probably wasn’t there,” Ricky Ponting asserted.
Capitals have won one game, and lost their second; they take on KL Rahul’s Punjab Kings on Sunday.