‘We can’t do much now apart from just win games’

Following a fourth win in five matches, including three on the trot, the Royal Challengers Bangalore faithful may still nurse hopes, however faint, of a spot in the playoffs. But all-rounder Marcus Stoinis didn’t want to look that far ahead.

“I hope we don’t change [the thinking],” the Aussie said after the latest victory over Kings XI Punjab on Wednesday.

“We’re fortunate we are not in a position where we can think too far ahead anyways. I don’t know what the equations are, but we can’t do much now apart from just win the games.

Just have fun

“We now go to Delhi, and if we win that we cross the next bridge. So you just go, express yourself, and have fun.”

The key, Stoinis said, was that the side no longer seemed shackled by the baggage it collected over six straight defeats at the start of the season.

“When you lose a couple of games, you try and play not to lose rather than play to win,” he said. “It takes certain individuals to turn that around and we’ve had a few guys stand up, who’ve made runs and taken wickets in big situations. We’ve started winning some close games as well which has given everyone confidence.”

The 29-year-old can count himself among those who have helped effect the change. Against King’s XI, he proved the ideal foil to A.B. de Villiers’ manic hitting, before coming to the party himself by smashing 20 runs off the final four balls of the innings.

“The plan was to put the ego away a little bit,” he said, about curbing his natural instincts.

“If you’ve got a plan and you are doing it for the team, you have to trust it. Fortunately AB was at the other end and we knew that once we were in and seen a few balls, we could capitalise.”

R. Ashwin, the losing captain, felt it was yet another instance of his side failing to close out a tight contest. The defeat — fourth in five matches


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