Retiring out a batsman to bring in a fresh batter onto the pitch is becoming a recurring thing nowadays. Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) head coach Andy Flower revealed that they considered retiring out openers KL Rahul and Quinton de Kock after the 18th over against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR).
The Lucknow franchise took on Kolkata Knight Riders in a must-win game at the DR DY Patil Stadium, Mumbai. Quinton De Kock and KL Rahul went onto bat and they went all guns blazing from the start itself.
Kolkata bowlers had no answer to the class of shots shown by both batters. KL Rahul played the anchor role while Quinton De Kock took on the bowlers and brought up his century as well, his second in the history of IPL.
In the 18th over, LSG head coach Andy flower considered the possibility of retiring both of them out because they might have been tired and fresh batters can come into tonk the ball out of the park. Speaking on Star Sports, the former cricketer said:
“At the end of the 18th over, we sent a message saying, ‘If you guys are too tired hitting the ball hard, you can retire and we’ll send some of our big-hitters in.’ These boys, all of them, from 1 to 9 can hit the ball hard like that.”
Have given him a lot of satisfaction – Andy Flower on Quinton de Kock
However, KL Rahul and Quinton de Kock continued the onslaught and posted 210 runs on the board. They accumulated 61 runs in the last three overs during the record partnership. De Kock scored an unbeaten 140* at a strike rate of 200 and this innings included 10 fours and 10 sixes.
Talking about this brilliant innings as well, Andy flower said, “One boundary is a big boundary, so Quinton hitting balls like that, who’s not renowned for his big-hitting actually, that’d have given him a lot of satisfaction.”
Lucknow won the match by the barest of margins as great cameos from Shreyas Iyer, Rinku Singh and Sunil Narine took the Knight Riders close to the total and were favourites at one point. But the last two balls changed the tide of the match as Stoinis got wickets on each of those balls and Lucknow won the game by two runs.