Virender Sehwag backs Kings XI Punjab to play aggressively
Former opening batsman Virender Sehwag revealed that his team will have an aggressive approach throughout IPL-10
Published - Apr 5, 2017 12:35 pm | Updated - Apr 5, 2017 12:43 pm
Former India opener Virender Sehwag, who now is the strategy and operations head of Kings XI Punjab, said that he will allow his side to play aggressive cricket during this year’s IPL.
Sehwag was himself a very aggressive player who believed in taking the attack to the opposition and demoralising them. He was one of the most unabashed cricketers of his generation who was fearless in his approach.
“We are not worried about victory or defeat. I will allow my players to play aggressive cricket (in the IPL),” he told reporters here after unveiling the team’s jersey.
“The players of Kings XI Punjab would play fearlessly like I have played,” quipped the right-handed batsman. Injury to their star opening batsman Murali Vijay has forced them to replace him with India Test specialist: Ishant Sharma. Though, Vijay is a batsman, Punjab has replaced him with a frontline bowler which raised a few eyebrows but Sehwag quipped the reason behind it.
“IPL was known as the game of batsmen but half of the matches in IPL were won due to bowlers, who stopped the batsmen from scoring. So, we have picked Ishant Sharma in place of Murli Vijay to sharpen our bowling attack.” Sehwag played the last half of his international career with his Delhi teammate Ishant, hence he knows what the fast bowler can bring to the table.
“It’s a pleasure to inform that Ishant (Sharma) is now picked up by Kings XI. I have an old rapport with him as we played together in Indian team,” he said. Kings XI Punjab had a disastrous season last year as they finished the league at the bottom of the table with just 4 wins out of 14.
“We have good batsmen like Martin Guptill, Glenn Maxwell, Eoin Morgan, Darren Sammy and David Miller. If any two of these batsmen perform then we can easily win the match,” he added.
The 38-year old was optimistic about the team faring better this season citing that they hit rock bottom last year and the only way is the way up from here.
Asked about it, Sehwag said “Now we can’t go down anymore. Now, we can go up. If our players would perform, our team would reach in the play off.”
Kings XI Punjab will play 3 games at their adopted home venue: Holkar Stadium. Interestingly, this is the very stadium where Sehwag smashed his only double century (219) in ODI cricket way back in 2011. He is aware that the boundaries of this ground are on the smaller side, something which Punjab can play to their advantage.
Due to the small sized ground at Indore, it is obvious that these games will be high-scoring ones. Sehwag hinted at playing with 5 bowlers at this ground as the batsmen will target the short boundaries and it is only fair to bolster your bowling line-up.
Kings XI Punjab will play their season opener at Holkar Stadium itself, where they lock horns with Rising Pune Supergiant on Saturday.