New Delhi, May 8: Delhi Daredevils all-rounder Irfan Pathan feels that Kevin Pietersen's absence has created a void in the team's batting line-up as the English cricketer left for England last week and also hopes New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor regains his touch soon.
Pietersen during his stint with the Daredevils this season, created a long lasting impression as he scored 305 runs off just eight innings at an average of 61 and an exciting strike rate of 147.34.
Delhi, played just one match after Pietersen left for England, and that was enough to feel the absence of the stylish cricketer, as the team struggled to score runs, as they lost wickets at quick succession.
Pietersen's absence was literally felt as Delhi slid from 95/3 to 153/9 in a span of 7.2 overs, as it made everyone miss the English cricketer who was very consistent and probably that covered up the weaknesses of the title favourites so far in the tournament as it was exposed on Monday night as Daredevils' middle-order failed to put up a good score.
"When Kevin was there, he was performing really well for the Daredevils in the middle-order but now some other batsman needs to put his hand up and perform at his best," Pathan said at the post match press conference after Delhi lost by six wickets to Kolkata.
Pathan also said the team has some talented players and hopes the Kiwi batsman Ross Taylor would hit form soon.
"We have some wonderful players in the middle order like Ross Taylor. Once he starts firing, you know he is a player to watch out for. He can hit the ball long way. We have no doubt with every match he plays, he is getting better.
Pathan further added that Pietersen's contribution to the team's success was huge and now in order to succeed others need to take up his role and help the team win.
"Kevin has done a good job for us but at the same time, it's an opportunity for others to take his place," he added. Pathan said the loss of both the openers in quick succession and failure of the bowling unit led to team's defeat at the hands of KKR.
About the six wicket loss, Pathan said that his team couldn't put more runs on the board and early wickets at the start of the innings was another blow for Daredevils as they couldn't overcome and finally managed to score 153/9 in 20 overs.
"We did not put enough runs on the board. We could have scored 160-plus but that wasn't the case today. We lost Virender Sehwag and David Warner around the same time and that put us on backfoot.
He also said that the team wants to perform well in the remaining matches, after losing to Kolkata Knight Riders at home.
"As a bowling unit, we always try to get better with each passing game. We did not perform well and need to bowl better in matches ahead," he said.