After a highly successful World Cup campaign, Zaheer Khan has witnessed a lean patch in the ongoing IPL but Royal Challengers Bangalore coach Ray Jennings feels the pace spearhead is just a match away from regaining his form.
Zaheer has picked up only five wickets from as many matches in the tournament so far with best figures of three for 32. He also has been expensive with an economy rate of 9.10.
"Zaheer's form is a concern but he is unpredictable. He is a kind of player who can come and pick up four five wickets. He is a match-winner and his form is the biggest motivation for his comeback," Jennings told reporters on the eve of RCB's match against Delhi Daredevils on Wednesday.
Jennings views were endorsed by captain Daniel Vettori, who said irrespective of his indifferent form Zaheer remains a vital cog in RCB's scheme of things. "On the day, you need one of your bowlers to step up. It's important that Zaheer and myself start well because we are the key bowlers," Vettori said.
Vettori feels a win on Wednesay will brighten RCB's chances in the Twenty20 tournament. "It's pretty much the same situation for every team. The table is tight and if we can win this game we move upto top four," he said.
The RCB skipper also warned his bowlers to be on their toes while bowling to his counterpart Virender Sehwag on Wednesday. "I have played against Sehwag a lot in international cricket. We have made strategies against him in the past but they have not always worked. We need to be on top of our bowling (tomorrow)," Vettori said.
He also welcomed explosive Chris Gayle's inclusion in the RCB squad, but said besides the big-hitting West Indian RCB also boast with enough firepower in its batting order. "Gayle's inclusion is a confidence builder to the team. He bowls and fields well and gives us a lot of balance," Vettori insisted.
"(But) with the likes of (Virat) Kohli, AB (de Villiers), (Tillakaratne) Dilshan, (Cheteshwar) Pujara, Saurabh Tiwary we have enough X-factor in the team," he added.
Jennings added, "Very happy to have Gayle in the side. He offers us balance. We have a very strong top order and Chris has only stregthen it further."
The RCB coach refused to buy the theory that of late India has started to produce green-tops.
He also said that bowlers have, so far, produced sub-standard performances in the event.
"First of all you don't find green wickets in India. There isn't enough grass in India," Jennings said. "At the end of the day it is a battle between bat and ball. But the standard of bowling has not been that good," he added.