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Anand Subramaniam in Sharjah 21 April 2014 - 10:00pm IST

Yet to see the best of our bowling: Bailey

Kings XI captain backs his bowlers to put their best foot forward soon

The Kings XI Punjab are riding high on confidence after two back-to-back victories. Glenn Maxwell and David Miller have ripped apart bowling attacks thus far and chased down huge totals with ease. But there still are some doubts about their bowling attack, which has allowed the opposition the leeway to post huge totals on the board.

Kings XI Punjab captain George Bailey agreed that there was scope for improvement in the bowling department. “I do know that there are things that we can improve with our bowling, but I think they both have been really good batting wickets, so it’s been challenging to work out exactly what a good score is. I guess we will start to learn more about that in the next couple of games. But ideally, you don’t want to be chasing 200 or close to 200 every time you bat. It becomes difficult. I don’t think we have seen the best of our bowling attack yet. So, we are just after consistency from our team.”

Barring Glenn Maxwell and David Miller, none of the other batsmen have looked as effective. The eyeballs have been on Virender Sehwag, but the opener has hardly made his presence felt. Sehwag though had the backing of Kings XI Punjab coach Sanjay Bangar. “He is hitting the ball well. In the last game, he was slightly unlucky. It went off the middle of the bat and straight to a fielder; it could have gone anywhere. We know, within our own minds, that a good knock from Viru is just around the corner,” Bangar said.

Bangar reserved a special mention for Cheteshwar Pujara, who anchored the innings at one end during Kings XI’s chase of 192 against the Rajasthan Royals. We are pretty pleased with the way Cheteshwar is shaping up because he has a role to play. Despite this being Twenty20 cricket, I still believe there is room for a solid batsman at the top of the order. I am pretty sure as the tournament goes on, he will pick up his game. It’s just a matter of getting used to the T20 stuff. I believe if he can do that, it will be good for the team, and we will not have to rely on just the talents we have in the middle order in Maxwell, Miller and Bailey.

Up next, Kings XI meet the Sunrisers Hyderabad, who have a good quality bowling side featuring the likes of Dale Steyn, Ishant Sharma and leggie Amit Mishra. “Not just their bowling, I think their batting is very strong too,” Bailey said. “I think they are just a very well-balanced team. They didn’t probably bat as well as they would have liked in that first game, but their bowling almost dragged them back into it. That’s how good it is. So we’ve just got to be aware of that, and once again, sum up the conditions because they may be different again tomorrow.”

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