Jaipur: Expressing disappointment at his team's loss against Rajasthan Royals, Kolkata Knight Riders captain Gautam Gambhir said it was the batsmen who should be blamed as they failed to achieve a modest target.
"Yes I am very disappointed. 145 was always chaseable because it was very good wicket to bat on. I feel our bowlers did a fantastic job by restricting the hosts to 144 but we batted poorly," said Gambhir at the post match press conference.
Defending a total of 144, the Royals' pace attack performed well to bundle out the defending champions for 125 in 19 overs in their IPL match on Monday.
Gambhir said his batsmen got out playing bad shots. "I feel they were bad shots. It was a good wicket and the outfield was also very fast. The bowlers had done their job but the batsmen failed in their role. We could not build up good partnerships. We can't keep on repeating such mistakes. We have to learn from them."
Gambhir himself got out to a reckless shot off Siddharth Trivedi's bowling and the skipper admitted his mistake.
"I am not one of those who beat around the bush. I also played a bad shot. But we have to learn from such mistakes. We can't afford such type of performance as defending champions.
"We had worked hard to become champions in the previous edition of the tournament. I would say it was not cricket and we did not play like champions. We have now little time left and have to leave for Bangalore and then have to play with little time in between the matches," he said.
Gambhir said he always asks his batsmen to play positive and smart cricket.
"I always tell them to be positive and play fearless but smart cricket. We can't lose 6-7 wickets early and expect to win."
The skipper, however, refused to believe that as defending champions, KKR was under pressure.
"No there is no pressure. It is a great fun. We had worked hard to become the champions last year. I tell my boys if every other team is looking to beat us we too are looking to defeat everyone else," Gambhir insisted.
Heaping praise on Eoin Morgan, who played a fine knock of 51 off 38 balls, Gambhir said, "He played a fine innings and we had thought that he would do it for us. He has been fantastic finisher for England and we expect him to do it more often here too.
"His batting was a big positive from this match and I hope he carries forward this confidence."