Had a chat with Anil Kumble about what the team is looking for from me: Jhye Richardson
12 Apr 2021
The Director of Cricket Operations at Punjab Kings, Anil Kumble is pleased with the fact that the newly named franchise has managed to make some value additions in the bowling department. During the player’s auction held in February earlier this year, Punjab Kings bagged the services of Australian speedsters Jhye Richardson and Riley Meredith.
Punjab Kings start their IPL 14 campaign against the Rajasthan Royals on Monday at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Anil Kumble expressed his eagerness to start off with a win under their belt which would set them in nice rhythm through the course of the tournament.
"Rajasthan Royals are a very good side, they have really some big hitters in their team, we need to be aware of that. Obviously, we want to start with a win, last year we came real close to win the first game but this time around we want to cross that line. " Kumble said.
Stressing on the importance of the pace battery he further added, "The important aspect for us was to get foreign firepower in the bowling department and I am really glad that we have got Jhye Richardson and Riley Meredith backing Chris Jordon. I am really happy with the options we have."
Meanwhile, Kumble also stated that they have added a mental conditioning coach to look after the welfare of the players. Life in the bio-bubble is never easy. The players are always confined to hotel rooms and lobbies and are not allowed to roam outside. Hence it is important for a mental conditioning coach to take care of the players.
"It's been really good, the last couple of weeks. It feels as though just the extension of Dubai, it does not feel like that I have been away from the team for that long. So overall we have had really good intense sessions over the last two weeks. We had some simulations done, match simulation scenarios, and practiced really hard. We have also included a mental conditioning coach who is coming into the squad. I think that is important," said Kumble.
Punjab Kings (formerly Kings XI Punjab) are yet to win an IPL trophy to date. Their best performance came in 2014 when they qualified for the final for the first and the only time only to lose against the eventual champions Kolkata Knight Riders. Last year, Punjab finished at 6th place despite playing some terrific cricket especially mid-way through the season.