Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) are yet to win an IPL title despite having some of the game’s superstars at their disposal over the years.
Under Virat Kohli’s captaincy, the franchise has failed to qualify for the play-offs in the last three seasons. While Kohli had an extraordinary year with the bat, smashing four centuries in IPL 2016 wherein they reached the final, RCB have finished 8th, 6th and 8th in the eight-team table in the subsequent editions.
Ahead of the 13th edition of Indian Premier League, however, the RCB camp is looking confident and it could be a breakthrough season for them.
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In an exclusive chat with Hindustan Times, RCB’s veteran wicketkeeper batsman Parthiv Patel said that he will assist the skipper to end the team’s trophy drought.
“Leading the side comes naturally, there are a lot of young players (in the RCB squad), who are quite comfortable chatting with me. I try and help them out, make sure they are in good space, that’s something you have to do as a senior player, help out the junior guys,” stated Parthiv, who led Gujarat to their Ranji Trophy title in 2017.
He also pointed out that Mike Hesson’s appointment as the head of coaching staff is a great move as the former New Zealand in-charge has brought in calmness in the dressing room.
“I think there’s a lot of calmness around the group and a lot of positive vibes with him (Mike Hesson around). The season’s new, everyone is looking forward to it. Mike has been a successful coach all over the world. So far whatever practice sessions we’ve had, he has added great value. He gives importance to each player of the squad. Hopefully, we can replicate this vibe and practice into performance (when the IPL starts).”
Unlike the majority of RCB cricketers, Parthiv has been a part of IPL-winning team thrice. While the 35-year-old first tested the success with CSK in 2010, two of his triumphs have come with Mumbai Indians in 2015 and 2017.
“RCB fans have always been loyal, they’ve been a great support for us throughout all these years. Like every year, we’ll be going into the tournament with the hope of winning it. As one of the senior players I can assure you that we are going play our heart out in every game and try and win whenever we step on the field,” he remarked.
Considering his performance at the top (373 runs at a strike rate of 139.17) in IPL 2019, there should be no question about his batting position. But when it comes to the IPL, hardly anything is on the expected lines. Moreover, Australia’s white-ball skipper Aaron Finch’s entry in the RCB set-up has spiced up things.
“Thankfully and fortunately I’m not Mike Hesson (team director). So I don’t have to make those decisions. It’s about the team, it’s never about the individual player. Whatever the team decides I’ll be alright with it,” Parthiv said.