'How long can you go on?' - Ajit Agarkar on Chris Gayle not firing in IPL 2021
Gayle’s form is a major concern for the Punjab-based franchise as their batting line-up has witnessed a horrific collapse in the last two games.
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West Indies explosive power-hitter Chris Gayle was in a blistering form in the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), hosted in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). After warming the bench in the initial matches, Gayle made a comeback in Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings) Playing XI, and amassed a stunning 288 runs in seven games at an average of 41.14 and strike rate of 137.14.
However, the left-hander has failed to replicate the same performance in IPL 2021. Though Gayle got off to a promising start as he played a sublime knock of 40 runs against Rajasthan Royals, he has failed to continue the good form. In the next three matches against CSK, DC, and SRH, the 41-year-old marched back to the pavilion after scoring 10, 11, and 15 runs respectively.
Gayle’s form is a major concern for the Punjab-based franchise as their batting line-up has witnessed a horrific collapse in the last two games. Former Indian cricketer Ajit Agarkar opined on Chris Gayle’s form saying that it is a tricky situation as it will be a difficult decision for the team to exclude him from the Playing XI due to his lean patch.
Though Agarkar acknowledged that it will be difficult to leave out Gayle, he also believes that PBKS needs to introspect regarding how many games they can give to Gayle to regain his form. Speaking on ESPNCricinfo, Ajit said, “I don’t know, he started well. He got 40 in the first game. The challenge with Chris Gayle is that he did not play the first few games last season and then came back and he was as good as ever.
“So I can understand it is a difficult decision to sit him out. If he is it and when he has done well, you always want to accommodate him. How long can you go on if he is not firing, especially at this stage of his career?” he asked.
I don’t know how long they can keep playing Chris Gayle, says Ajit Agarkar
Further, the veteran reckoned that the franchise can’s keep playing Gayle if he isn’t scoring runs as they benched a talented batsman David Malan, who can provide the required stability to the batting order. “Their problem is that Nicholas Pooran is not scoring run either, who they must have had high hopes from. It’s a tricky one. I don’t know how long they can keep playing Chris Gayle if he is not getting runs.
“But at this stage, do you look at someone like Dawid Malan, who is sitting outside at the moment. But overall, they also have to bat better. Chris Gayle is just one of the guys who played a poor shot,” Agarkar concluded.