Ponting criticised Kohli's performances this season Image: Getty
Royal Challengers Bangalore's slump in this season of the IPL has drawn criticism from various quarters of the cricketing world, with Virat Kohli at the centre of the storm. After Sunil Gavaskar, Australia great Ricky Ponting has pointed the finger at the RCB captain and said Kohli has done next to nothing in the IPL this season.
RCB are dead bottom on the eight-team IPL table with just five points from their 13 matches and were the first team to get knocked out of the reckoning for the play-offs. Kohli's team have some of the biggest global superstars on their roster, with the likes of Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers, Shane Watson and Kagiso Rabada besides Kohli.
Ponting, who was also the coach of Mumbai Indians in the 2015-16 season, opined that Kohli had nothing to show for this year's IPL unlike last year when the Indian ace was in epic form.
"They (RCB) got on an amazing roll at the back end of last year's tournament when Kohli was playing out of his skin, de Villiers was playing well, Gayle was chipping in and Watson was doing a good job with bat and ball. But so far, Kohli has done next to nothing, there's been flashes in the pan from Gayle and AB de Villiers, but the consistency just hasn't been there," he said in an interview with cricket.com.au.
Virat has been sub-par compared to his lofty standards this season and has only scored 250 runs from the nine matches he played. His current figures are abysmal compared to last season when the India captain could do no wrong and smashed a record-breaking 973 runs in 16 matches and was the key figure in RCB's journey to the final.
However, it wasn't only Kohli who misfired this term. The other two superstars of RCB's famous trio returned worse numbers. Chris Gayle has scored 152 runs in eight outings while South African ace ABD managed only 216 from his 9.
Ponting also specifically mentioned the absence of opener KL Rahul as a detrimental factor to RCB's poor showing this time. The Karnataka batsman was ruled out of the IPL owing to an injury sustained during the India vs Australia series preceding the IPL.
"KL Rahul is a massive loss for them. He had a terrific back-end to last season. He did some amazing things last year, so him not being at the top has been a big loss," Ponting said.