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IPL 2018: After crashing out, RCB must be remembering these 5 ex-players

The Challenges have been notorious for changing their teams time and again.

KL Rahul
Royal Challengers Bangalore batsman Lokesh Rahul. (Photo: IANS)

It was an anti-climax for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the eleventh edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) as they lost to a determinant Rajasthan Royals (RR) by 30 runs in their must-win last game at Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur on Saturday, May 19. Both teams were tied at equal points (12 from 13) till the beginning of this game and given RCB’s three consecutive wins and their better net run-rate, their supporters fancied a victory over a more inconsistent RR who also missed some of their top names in this game like Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes.

But still, RR won, thanks to a woeful batting display by Virat Kohli’s men who could not make any impact on the game once their skipper fell cheaply (4 off 9). From 75 for 1, RCB got bowled out for 134 while chasing the RR’s not-so-daunting score of 164. AB de Villiers remained the torch bearer of an otherwise dark batting performance, scoring 53 off 35 balls. But this has been the RCB’s hallmark this season: failing to click as a unit, especially in batting which is too much dependent on an individual or two.

When we include the fact that some of the players that RCB ignored this season really went on to do good for their new sides, the disappointment about Virat Kohli’s boy’s yet another pathetic campaign in the annual cricket gala becomes more gloomy.

Here are five names that the Royal Challengers ignored this season and could have benefited a lot from not taking such an action:

1. Chris Gayle (Kings XI Punjab)

Chris Gayle
Chris Gayle. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The T20 icon had his best times in the IPL for Bangalore and that too consistently over a period of time. But yet he was ignored by his old franchise for IPL 11, reportedly to make way for fresh blood. The Royals did not find any replacement for Gayle who claimed that he was promised to be retained by the franchise but he never got a call again. The over-dependence on Kohli and AB de Villiers continued even as Gayle, 38 now, continued to play his natural game for KXIP, who took him at the dying hours of the auction of this year’s IPL.

Gayle has played 10 games this season and scored 368 runs (something none other from RCB except Kohli and de Villiers have been able to score) which is far better than his tallies in 2016 and 2017 and also hit a ton, his first outside the RCB. He averages 46 this year and has maintained a strike rate of 147.20.

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