Royal Challengers Bangalore will face an upbeat Kings XI Punjab in their second encounter of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2018. Ahead of the mouth-watering clash, RCB star Mandeep Singh who played a brilliant cameo in the opening game against Kolkata Knight Riders said he was confident of taking on the Punjab bowlers in the next match. Mandeep played an imperative knock of 37 towards the end of the game to ensure RCB had a good 177 on board against KKR at the Eden Gardens.
In the game against KKR, skipper Virat Kohli and his partner AB de Villiers had got the momentum going with a solid display of batting skills plundering the KKR bowlers all around the park. The two right-handers were looking destructive before Dinesh Karthik’s gamble of getting Nitish Rana to bowl an over at a crucial point in the match paid him off as the youngster in two successive balls removed both Ab de Villiers and Kohli. It was Mandeep Singh who took the mantle from there on and got RCB back on track.
Mandeep who used to open for RCB has been pushed down the order and he didn’t disappoint with some sensational shots which left even Kohli mesmerized. Talking about his innings, Mandeep said that the plan he came with was to keep the scoreboard rotating after the departure of two best batsmen of the side. “Wanted to see off the first couple of overs and construct a partnership as we lost two of our most important batsmen at once. Both of us (Mandeep and Sarfaraz Khan) had planned that we’ll keep the scoreboard ticking, score the odd boundary or two and then let loose in the last couple,” he was quoted as saying by Sportskeeda.
Mandeep who has been a constant figure in the IPL and has played for the likes of Kings XI Punjab and Mumbai Indians and the Kolkata Knight Riders gaining a plethora of experience in the tournament over the years. The Punjab batsman revealed that this time around he was told by the RCB management that he needs to find a place for himself in the middle order which he accepted wholeheartedly and performed well to gain confidence from his recent outing against KKR.
“Runs down the order have given me some confidence going into the next match, Yes, to an extent I am satisfied, still I feel that I could’ve done more on the last three balls which would’ve enabled us to add 10-15 more runs to our total. Obviously, this would’ve felt better had we won the match, but yeah, runs down the order have given me some confidence going into the next match,” Mandeep said. He asserted that he would still prefer to open the batting but is more than happy to don the middle order role for his team.