Bangalore: Stunned by a relatively weaker opposition on paper, Royal Challengers Bangalore’s skipper Daniel Vettori on Sunday admitted that Ajinkya Rahane's brilliant century and Owais Shah's quick-fire fifty spoiled the day for his side against Rajasthan Royals in an IPL 5 game here.
Rahane produced a scintillating unbeaten 103 off just 60 balls and stitched a 121-run stand off 50 balls with Shah, who scored 60 off 29 balls, for the second wicket to propel Rajasthan to a mammoth 195 for 2 after Rahul Dravid won the toss and opted to bat at the R Chinnaswamy Stadium. Chasing a massive target proved too much for the star-studded RCB line-up as they were bowled out for 136.
"We were pretty satisfied with how we started but then Rahane and Shah really took the game away from us. We know we can come back from this. We need to get back to winning ways," Vettori said after the demoralising 59-run loss.
Vettori also rued the poor performance of the middle-order, saying they need to step up their performance. “There is a lot of expectation from the top four batsmen to do their job but they can't do it every time, and guys in the middle [order] need to step up," Vettori said. The New Zealander also felt that the lack of good fifth bowler also made easy for the opposition to become aggressive in the last five-six overs. "That [lack of good fifth bowler] probably was the root of the problem. This is something we need to rectify quickly. Teams batting first have put up decent scores, whereas, we have struggled to chase on this strip," he added.
His counterpart and winning skipper, Dravid, also praised Rahane and Shah for their brilliant show with the bat. "Shah and Rahane batted splendidly. Some of their shots were incredible and they played those shots against a side that has five international bowlers," Dravid said.
Rahane, who scored his maiden IPL century, said that his knock was a "special" one. "That was a special knock from me and I would like to congratulate my team-mates for their performance as well," he said. "I am playing along side my role model, Dravid, so I get to learn a lot of things from him. This is quite a long tournament, so I just need to keep my form going," Rahane added.