IPL 2022: 3 things to expect from new RCB head coach Sanjay Bangar

Former India all-rounder Sanjay Bangar was recently named the new head coach of the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) for the next two Indian Premier League (IPL) seasons. Bangar was RCB’s batting consultant for IPL 2021 and will take over from Mike Hesson.

Hesson himself was filling in as head coach after Simon Katich stepped down from the role before the UAE leg of IPL 2021 citing personal reasons. With Bangar’s appointed as head coach, Hesson will continue in his primary role as the director of cricket operations.

Bangar was the former batting coach of Team India before being replaced by Vikram Rathour. The ex-cricketer joined Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings) as assistant coach in 2014 and was soon promoted to head coach. He resigned from the role in December 2016.

3 challenges before RCB’s new coach

RCB have been one of the most high-profile sides in the IPL over the years. However, they have failed to lift the crown even once. With a new coach at the helm, we look at three challenges awaiting Bangar.

#1 Greater emphasis on team needs than star power

RCB were heavily dependent on AB de Villiers to deliver the goods in recent seasons. Pic: IPLT20.COM
RCB were heavily dependent on AB de Villiers to deliver the goods in recent seasons. Pic: IPLT20.COM

This is one area RCB need to focus on if they are to win the IPL crown in the near future. If we look at the two most successful IPL sides, the Mumbai Indians (MI) and the Chennai Super Kings (CSK), both have given priority towards building a solid group of players, be it youngsters or veterans.

The case has been the opposite with RCB. They have banked on a few star players like AB de Villiers, Virat Kohli and, this season, Glenn Maxwell as well. The cricketers have delivered no doubt but as a team, RCB yet again failed to go all the way in IPL 2021.

🔊 ANNOUNCEMENT 🔊Sanjay Bangar, former interim head coach of #TeamIndia and batting consultant for RCB, is all set to #PlayBold as the new head coach of RCB for the next two years.Congratulations, Coach Sanjay! We wish you all the success.#WeAreChallengers #IPL2022 https://t.co/AoYaKIrp5T

RCB need to move away from this star culture and build a team based on what works best for the franchise. With a new coach and a new captain (with Virat Kohli having resigned), RCB have a good opportunity to start afresh. The mega auction couldn’t have come at a better time for Bangar and Hesson.

#2 Leave behind baggage of the past

RCB went down to KKR in the IPL 2021 Eliminator. Pic: IPLT20.COM
RCB went down to KKR in the IPL 2021 Eliminator. Pic: IPLT20.COM

Opinions over Virat Kohli’s captaincy with RCB, as well as with the Indian team, are divided. And that will always be the case. However, going by pure numbers, Kohli’s RCB can’t be termed a successful side.

They made the final in 2016 and have reached the playoffs in the last two editions. However, Kohli and RCB do not have an IPL trophy to show for, which is why they can’t be placed in the same league as MI or CSK.

Incredibly, they have as passionate a fan base as the Mumbai and Chennai franchises have, despite failing to live up to their potential year after year. RCB’s supporters deserve a better team that can take on the best in the IPL. A lot of responsibility for the same will be in the hands of the new franchise coach.

Sanjay Bangar named Head Coach of RCBMike Hesson speaks about the appointment of RCB’s Head Coach while Sanjay Bangar addresses the fans explaining his plans for the mega auction and the 2022 season, on @myntra presents Bold Diaries.#PlayBold #WeAreChallengers #IPL2022 https://t.co/wkm7VbizTV

Bangar and the new RCB skipper will have to ensure that the IPL 2022 squad doesn’t carry the baggage of the past. IPL 2022 will mark a new start for all teams and RCB must utilize the opportunity to begin on a clean slate. Bangar must set the agenda for the new RCB.

#3 Invest smartly and for the future

Harshal Patel had a memorable IPL 2021. Pic: IPLT20.COM
Harshal Patel had a memorable IPL 2021. Pic: IPLT20.COM

Sides like RCB, the Rajasthan Royals (RR) and the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) have been guilty of splurging handsomely on one or two star players, hoping they would do the trick for the franchise. However, the history of IPL proves that the “magic wand” theory doesn’t work in the T20 league.

Leave aside Kyle Jamieson and Chris Morris, even legendary white-ball players like Yuvraj Singh and Ben Stokes failed to deliver as per their prize when picked for exorbitant sums by their respective franchises. Even for an all-rounder, a player cannot bowl more than four overs and if he is batting in the middle or lower order, he will get a chance to make an impact only on rare occasions.

Bangar and his coaching staff must look to invest more in players like Devdutt Padikkal and Harshal Patel, who can deliver consistently in the long run. What RCB have done in recent years is make some haphazard choices and then dump them just as swiftly. For IPL 2021, they picked Dan Christian who was way past his prime and proved to be a liability to the team.

𝐇𝐞 𝐜𝐚𝐦𝐞. 𝐇𝐞 𝐬𝐚𝐰. 𝐇𝐞 𝐂𝐨𝐧𝐪𝐮𝐞𝐫𝐞𝐝. 👑A legacy has been left behind. Thank you, Skipper! 💯#PlayBold #TeamIndia https://t.co/G2qpQ8vtVo

With a new leadership group all set to come into force at RCB, Bangar and co. have a chance to rectify their mistakes. Of course, before that they need to admit that they have been on the wrong path. Unless the belief that change is needed comes from within, RCB will continue to struggle the way they did in the Kohli era.

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