Former Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Virat Kohli, who has been out of form in the 15th season of the Indian Premier League,  was promoted to the top of the order against Rajasthan Royals on Tuesday after he scored back-to-back ducks. However, the move did not yield the desired results he was dismissed for nine. The India captain, however, received the backing of RCB captain Faf du Plessis, who said “great players go through phases like this.”

“We tried changing the batting line-up today and we feel that they can try playing positively,” du Plessis said when asked about Kohli being sent to bat as an opener despite his bad form. 

“(Kohli) Can’t go into a shell. Great players go through phases like this and we wanted to get him in the game straightaway so that he doesn’t sit in the sidelines and think about the game. It’s a game of confidence.”

Kohli hasn’t scored a century in any format for over three years now. He had got out to first ball ducks in successive games before the match the RR, which RCB eventually lost by 29 runs.

Du Plessis admitted that his top-order batters are lacking in consistency and RCB will have to fix the problem sooner than later.

“The top order is a trick we need to fix. You need someone in the top four to bat through and we haven’t done that consistently,” he said.

“It’s pretty similar to the previous game. If you hit the deck hard in the first few overs, it is hard to get away. The dropped chance cost us,” the former South Africa captain added.

Meanwhile, RR skipper Sanju Samson said his side’s run chase was “looking dicey” after 15 overs but they won the game thanks to Riyan Parag, who scored 56 not out off just 31 balls.

“We have been backing him (Parag) and he came in and showed the world how explosive he can be,” Samson said.

“We were 10-15 runs short with no dew and the wicket turning a bit. We were waiting for the back end of the batting order to go out and win matches. Almost everyone has put up a match-winning performance until now.”