Punjab Kings captain Mayank Agarwal has stated that “adaptability” has been a key component of the team’s IPL 2022 campaign, adding that having players like England batter Jonny Bairstow and young pace bowler Arshdeep Singh was enough to lift the mood in the team regardless of the circumstances.
Punjab Kings kept their tournament hopes alive by defeating Royal Challengers Bangalore by 54 runs on Friday after scoring a mammoth 209/9, thanks to half centuries from opener Bairstow (66 off 29 balls) and Liam Livingstone (70 off 66 balls). But it was Baristow’s devastating batting at the top of the order that set the tone for the massive total, with the England batter scoring at a blistering strike rate of 227.58.
Agarwal credited Bairstow for the victory, saying, “We were very good with the bat. I thought we were brilliant. The wicket was holding up a bit. The way Jonny (Bairstow) and Livi (Livingstone) batted was simply amazing.”
He stated that Punjab Kings had maintained their batting strategy from last year, with minor adjustments made based on the situation and the wicket.
“We haven’t changed a lot to be really honest. It’s just about understanding the situations and understanding the wicket. If a wicket doesn’t allow us to get 200, we can’t go out and play that kind of cricket. So we have to be adaptable and flexible, which we have been.”
Agarwal stated that in a tournament like the IPL, one cannot be “too defensive” in their approach while bowling, as this could be counterproductive in the long run.
“It can get a little tough for a captain to do that (stopping boundaries and sixes at venues with short boundaries), but we can’t be too defensive with the ball. As we have seen with the IPL, if a batsman gets going and gets set, no boundaries are long enough these days. But you still have to be smart with how you go about it and be aggressive with the ball.”
He added that Bairstow and Arshdeep were the livewires of the side.
“Very, very energetic person (Arshdeep)… very confident guy. We can see that on the field. He enjoys his cricket and stays stress free. He’s a leader on the team.”
(Inputs from IANS)