RCB’s director of cricket operations, Mike Hesson, has heaped praise on Dinesh Karthik ahead of the team’s IPL 2022 Eliminator against Luucknow Super Giants (LSG) at the Eden Gardens, Kolkata on Wednesday (May 25).
Karthik has been a revelation in the IPL 2022 season for RCB. He has so far scored 287 runs in 14 innings at an incredible strike rate of 191.33. In particular, his brutal hitting in the death overs has left the cricket fraternity in awe.
Speaking on RCB Bold diaries, Hesson revealed that the franchise was taken aback by AB de Villiers’ decision to retire from professional cricket in November last year but the way Karthik has stepped up, he has become “that rock” of the side.
“DK (Dinesh Karthik) has probably been that rock. When you miss a guy like AB (de Villiers), we talked about how you are going to replace AB and now we are not doing that, but he (Karthik) has been exceptional in terms of finishing,” said Hesson.
He added that Karthik had been ably supported by Shahbaz Ahmed and Mahipal Lomror, while Rajat Patidar had also made significant contributions in the limited opportunities.
“I believe Rajat Patidar is an unsung hero. He came in as a replacement; he played some really important innings for us. He is a guy whom we would like to see how he develops in the next couple of years.
“Mahipal has also been impressive. He came in a little bit late. He had an initial injury and then came back. He had to wait. By this time, he has come back and added some spark,” Hesson said.
“Maxi (Maxwell) has got better and better as the tournament progressed,” he added.
Mike Hesson also had special praise reserved for Faf du Plessis’ captaincy, saying that the South African has the “capability of bringing people along for the ride”.
“Faf’s been great, once we decided who was going to be captain and he was made aware of that, it was certainly not all about him putting a stamp on it, but coming in and contributing to the culture, and the word culture is often overused and often it’s based around performance. So people go (say), ‘oh they’ve won, so they must have a great culture’… For me, the culture happens first. It’s something that is quite hard to define. It’s more about how you react under pressure, how you react to your team-mates, and Faf is big on that.
“He (du Plessis) is big on creating a legacy as well in terms of we have actually got to set things in place for the next three years and hopefully beyond. He also has the capability of bringing people along for the ride, which I think is really important.