Taking full responsibility for Lucknow Super Giants’ (LSG) defeat to record-time winners Mumbai Indians (MI) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 playoffs on Wednesday, stand-in skipper Krunal Pandya also opened up about the non-selection of former South Africa opener Quinton de Kock for the Eliminator. The veteran South African batter was overlooked by the LSG think-tank for the crucial fixture as West Indies star Kyle Mayers opened the innings with Prerak Mankad.
The West Indies batter was preferred over De Kock because of his batting record at the Chepauk. Mayers had slammed a blistering half-century at the same venue against MS Dhoni’s Chennai Super Kings (CSK) earlier this season. However, Mayers failed to fire for LSG as the Windies opener perished for 18 off 13 balls. Reflecting on LSG’s forgetful performance against MI in the Eliminator, legendary Indian opener Virender Sehwag slammed Lucknow over the questionable snubbing of De Kock at the IPL 2023 playoffs.
ALSO READ: ‘I was upset with Rohit. He is a young bowler…’: Sehwag slams MI captain for his ‘mistake’ despite crushing win vs LSG
“Even I have a good record in Chennai as I hit 319. But it doesn’t mean that even today I will go out there and score. Current form also matters and I feel Lucknow shot themselves in their own foot (by dropping De Kock),” Sehwag told Cricbuzz. Mayers, who is the second-highest run-getter for LSG this season, scored 379 runs for the Lucknow-based franchise in 13 matches. Former Mumbai Indians opener De Kock only featured in four matches for LSG this season. Averaging 35.75, the Proteas batter amassed 143 runs in 4 games. De Kock also slammed a half-century against defending champions Gujarat Titans.
Asked to chase down a challenging total of 183 in the 20-over contest, KL Rahul-less LSG side folded for 101 in 16.3 overs to lose the match by 81 runs at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. With the massive win over LSG, Rohit’s Mumbai Indians side has set a date with Gujarat Titans in the Qualifier 2 of the IPL 2023. The winner of Friday’s Qualifier 2 will meet Chennai Super Kings in the IPL 2023 final at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Sunday.