Bangalore’s overseas stars in Ellyse Perry, Heather Knight, Sophie Devine and Megan Schutt are yet to produce match-winning performances in the competition, something which former India men’s wicketkeeper-batter Parthiv Patel believes is a tremendous concern for the Smriti Mandhana-led side.
"The biggest concern for RCB is their overseas stars are not performing. They have invested heavily in their overseas players and they have not performed. Another thing is, whoever gets a start, should try to get a big one, which is something ailing in RCB’s camp," said Patel while replying to a question from IANS in a virtual interaction facilitated by Sports18 and JioCinema.
With talk on social media comparing the RCB women’s team to their male IPL counterparts in terms of being strong on paper but not firing collectively as a unit, Patel thinks the side still has it in them to bounce back from twin defeats.
"Having said that, if you look at their names in the side, they can bounce back and there is no doubt about it. I have no doubt that they will bounce back at some stage in the tournament. We have seen this in the men’s IPL before; where teams do not start that well, but they do go on to win the tournament and RCB has that potential."
On the other hand, Gujarat, despite fast-bowling all-rounder Kim Garth’s five-fer, ended up on the losing side against UP Warriorz, thanks to late fireworks from Grace Harris. Patel thinks Gujarat were unfortunate to lose and would require everyone in the eleven to contribute as a unit, especially with no word on injured skipper Beth Mooney’s availability for the rest of the tournament.
"Regarding Gujarat Giants, I thought they did really well and were probably unlucky to lose their last game to UP Warriorz. But I wouldn’t say unlucky as the way Grace Harris played that knock (in Sunday’s game), you hardly see 53 (58) runs being scored in the last three overs. Another thing is, losing out on their captain is a big blow."
"They were actually banking a lot on Beth Mooney, but it’s something which they will have to deal with and try to play as a team. They are not the team with superstars, so I think it is important for them, including the young Indian contingent, to contribute more which will make those little differences for Gujarat Giants."
With Bangalore and Gujarat aiming to improve their poor net run rate, Patel opined all five teams will need to make sure their net run rate is healthy, citing it becoming a decisive factor in deciding the sides progressing to playoffs.
"It’s going to be huge as it’s not a ten-team tournament. This is just a five-team tournament where only three teams will go through, so net run rate makes a huge difference. Most of the time teams do not actually worry about losing in the first couple of games. But that makes a huge difference when you are counting the net run rate at the end of the tournament."
"I thought RCB did well in the first game, though they were well and truly out of the game after the fifth or sixth over of their chase. But they still got close to Delhi’s score. Teams will have to think about it – if you are not in the game, just do not throw it away."
"They need to make sure that the net run rate stays in control because this is what will happen – there will be teams who will be having the same number of points and that’s when net run rate will come into play."