Punjab Kings' batting coach Wasim Jaffer has backed the bowling unit to come back stronger in IPL 2023 after they were taken to the cleaners by a rampaging Lucknow Super Giants batting order in a comprehensive 56-run defeat at the IS Bindra PCA Stadium.
Fast bowling trio of Kagiso Rabada, Arshdeep Singh and Sam Curran conceded 144 runs between them across 11 overs as Lucknow slammed 257/5, the highest total of the competition. In reply, Punjab could make 201 in 19.5 overs to be at sixth place in points table.
"Don't think there are any serious concerns (about the bowling attack) because they had thrice defended scores in tough conditions. Be it against Mumbai or Rajasthan, even in the earlier Kolkata game."
"The bowling unit has always performed for us this season. Friday was one of those days when everything clicked for the opposition and we were a bit clueless. Our bowlers will come back strong," said Jaffer in the post-match press conference.
Jaffer was quick in admitting that the planning by Punjab's bowlers could have been better after electing to bowl first. "You can say our plan backfired but then this is the tendency of all the IPL teams that they bowl first after winning the toss. When the opposition scores 257, chasing will always be difficult. We could have bowled better."
"The way they (LSG batters) started in the powerplay and didn't stop at all, like Ayush Badoni, Marcus Stoinis, Nicholas Pooran. When somebody plays like this it becomes very difficult. They didn't lose the momentum after the powerplay. It was an off day for our bowling."
Jaffer also felt Punjab's bowlers could have forced the Lucknow batters, led by fifties from Marcus Stoinis and Kyle Mayers to hit more towards the longer side of the stadium. "Perhaps we could have gone to Plan B a bit more. Like using the slower balls a lot more and using the longer boundary consistently."
"They (LSG) did this a lot more effectively and it worked for them. But again, most of their shots were clearing the boundary quite easily, so we have to give them credit for that."
Punjab's next game in IPL 2023 will be against four-time winners Chennai Super Kings at the MA Chidambaram Stadium on Sunday afternoon.