IPL 2024: Heartbroken by RCB’s 6th defeat in 7 matches, Mahesh Bhupathi urges BCCI to sell the team to a new owner

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By Margaretd. Regina

Tennis legend Mahesh Bhupathi has sparked debate by urging the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to consider a change in ownership for Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) franchise. This comes after RCB’s dismal performance in the IPL 2024, where they languish at the bottom of the points-table with just a win in 7 matches.

RCB’s struggles are evident in their 5-match losing streak. Led by Faf du Plessis, the team desperately needs a turnaround to reach the playoffs. Currently owned by United Spirits Limited (after Vijay Mallya’s ownership stint from 2008 to 2016), RCB have failed to replicate the success seen in other franchises.

Mahesh Bhupathi calls for a new RCB team owner

Taking to X (formerly Twitter), Bhupathi – husband of Bollywood actress Lara Dutta – expressed his views. “For the sake of the sport, the IPL, the fans and even the players, I think BCCI needs to enforce the sale of RCB to a new owner who will care to build a sports franchise the way most of the other teams have done so. #tragic,” he captioned his post.

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Du Plessis admits to low morale

RCB skipper Du Plessis acknowledged the team’s faltering confidence. “The game of cricket is tough when your confidence is down, there is nowhere to hide in the game,” he said after their recent loss to Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH), who went on to register the highest IPL total ever.

Du Plessis highlighted his team’s efforts to experiment with strategies, but conceded to the challenges posed by low morale.

“When you are not on top of your game it is difficult and you got nowhere to hide,” confessed the Proteas star.

“Obviously with five bowlers even tough on a wicket like that. I think we will have to keep trying different things, maybe bring in a bit of leg spin to try and get some wickets in the middle overs,” he added when asked about his team’s bowling performance on the batting friendly wicket of M Chinnaswamy Stadium.

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With questions regarding ownership and a team battling low morale, RCB faces a steep uphill climb. Whether they can find a winning formula and climb out of the cellar position in the IPL table remains to be seen.

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