The playoffs of the IPL are about to begin and once again, and the Royal Challengers Bangalore won’t be a part of it. RCB have now failed to qualify for the playoffs for the third straight year. Not only that, they have finished rock-bottom in the points table in two of those three years. It was another disappointing season for the RCB fans as they saw their team lose a number of games and finish last.
RCB started their IPL campaign completely on the wrong note as they lost six consecutive games and when one sees that they were just one win away from qualifying to the playoffs, it becomes even more frustrating. To be honest, there were a number of things which didn’t go in their favor. There was an umpiring call in the match against the Mumbai Indians which could have changed the result in RCB's favour. Virat Kohli lost nine out of the 14 tosses which definitely didn’t help his team's cause.
Every year, there are some players who are expected to perform well but they just don’t bring their top game. Same was the case with the RCB team this year. There are a few players who weren’t at their best and as a result, RCB should release them before next year’s auction. So, let’s have a look at three such players.
#3 Pawan Negi
Pawan Negi was bought by the RCB team using the RTM card in the 2018 Auction. Negi has the reputation of being a handy left-arm spinner and is known for his hitting abilities down the order. He used to play the same role for the Chennai Super Kings a few years ago. RCB expected the same kind of performance from him but he has disappointed them. Negi was preferred over Washington Sundar but he didn’t perform to his potential. In the seven games which he played, he picked up only three wickets at an economy rate of 9.13. He didn’t score the runs as well. He got to bat four times and managed only nine runs. In the match against Mumbai Indians where the ball was turning square, he leaked a lot of runs. After such a poor performance it wouldn’t be a surprise if RCB release him ahead of next year’s auction.
#2 Tim Southee
Death bowling has always been an issue for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, and to solve that problem, they brought in Tim Southee into the mix. Southee is a well established international bowler, who has had many match-winning performances for New Zealand. But somehow things didn’t go his way as he just failed to show up in the IPL. In the three games which he played, he picked up just a solitary wicket and leaked runs at an economy rate of 13.11. These numbers are just not acceptable when you are the premier overseas fast bowler of your team. In the game against the Kolkata Knight Riders, when KKR needed 30 off the last two overs, he gave 29 runs in the penultimate over which cost RCB that game. Southee himself should be disappointed with such a below-par performance in this year’s IPL. It would be better off if RCB look for some other fast bowlers in the auction by releasing Southee.
#1 Umesh Yadav
Umesh Yadav was one of the best bowlers in last year’s IPL when he had picked up 20 wickets in 14 games. He was fourth in the list of the leading wicket-takers. But this year, the story has been completely different. India was searching for a fourth pacer for the World Cup and Yadav definitely had an outside chance, but he failed to deliver. He has struggled throughout this IPL. In the 11 games which he played, he picked up just the eight wickets at a high economy rate of 9.80. He has leaked a lot of runs at the death. Against the Chennai Super Kings, he almost lost them the game before Parthiv Patel showed some brilliance in the field. Even in their last league game, he gave away more than 20 runs in the last over. Navdeep Saini showed some better skills than Umesh and it would be better if RCB invest in a young fast bowler for the next few seasons.