They may be languishing at the bottom of the points table but Kings XI Punjab coach Tom Moody has not stopped hoping for a semi-final spot in the Indian Premier League tournament.
Defeat after defeat has almost ruled them out of contention but Moody is still hopeful of making the last-four stage as they prepare to take on Rajasthan Royals.
“Our focus is on day to day matches. We want to do well and at the end of the day we like to see how close we are to the last four stage. I feel we can still make it to last four but we would have to give our best in the remaining matches,” Moody said after a practice session.
Moody said his side possessed talented players but different factors contributed in their poor show.
“Yes, we look better and strong on paper but we have failed to execute (plans) on the field. There have been various reasons behind it but biggest one is the injuries and bad form of our stars.
“Injuries to Brett Lee and Yuvraj Singh hurt us more but we are happy that we could break our long losing streak against Kolkata Night Riders and reached a stiff target because of Jayawardene ton,” said Moody.
When asked how difficult it was to motivate players after such a disastrous campaign, Moody said, “There is no question of losing motivation. The players have many things to keep themselves motivated. They all have personal reputation at stake. Many a Indian players were able to make it the national team after their fine performance in the IPL. We still can upset anybody’s party.”
Moody was not sure if Shaun Marsh could play against the inaugural champions.
“He is recovering fast but still doubt remains for him playing tomorrow. We had to change the combination, but we could find the winning one in the last match. We are the underdogs but can upset others and climb up the table.”
The Australian said the last five overs were proving to be very crucial and was pleased with the show of his bowlers in dying moments.
“Yes they are crucial but the bowlers too are fine-tuning their skills for these overs. Fortunately we have being doing well in last five overs,” he said.
Moody said it makes no difference that presence of Irfan Pathan in their side was hardly a factor when it comes to counter his brother explosive Yusuf in the rival camp.
“We need not have the knowledge of eating or sleeping habits of Yusuf Pathan. We need to have the cricketing knowledge and now everybody has all the knowledge of opponents. It is questions of executing plans to perfection,” he said.