Don't question integrity of my players: David Hussey

New Delhi: Kings XI Punjab skipper David Hussey has said media should not question the integrity of his players amidst the sting operation conducted by a TV channel that showed his former teammate Shalabh Srivastava allegedly demanding Rs.10 lakh to bowl deliberate no-balls.

"I would be very disappointed if the media puts a question mark on the integrity of my players. Everyone in my team, everyone in Kings XI Punjab as a brand, plays with utmost integrity and if any print or TV media tries to write differently or say something differently about my team, then I will be very disappointed. I can't really comment on the sting," said Hussey Tuesday night after his team lost to Delhi Daredevils by five wickets.

Srivastava, along with four others T.P. Sudhindra (Madhya Pradesh-Deccan Chargers), Mohnish Mishra (MP-Pune Warriors), Amit Yadav (Goa-Kings XI Punjab) and Abhinav Bali (Himachal Pradesh) were suspended by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), pending inquiry, on charges of spot-fixing.

About the lost match, Hussey blamed the batsmen for the defeat and said a total of 160 or above would have been a competitive total at the Kotla.

"Probably, it was a wicket for 160 runs. We bowled well to defend the total. Our batting really let the bowlers down again. Full credit to our bowlers once again, who fought hard and never gave in. They stretched the game till the last over," he said.

Hussey was all praise for pacer Parvinder Awana, who rattled the top order with his three quick strikes that also included the prized scalps of Virender Sehwag and Ross Taylor.

"The spell by Awana was world-class today (Tuesday). He got three batsmen out quickly which very much changed the complexion of the game. The mistake we did was not giving him the fourth over straight to get Mahela [Jayawardene] out. That was a mistake by me there. Awana keeps competing with the opposition. Hopefully, he has a big future not just with the Indian cricket team but also with the Kings XI Punjab as well," he said.

Hussey also refused to blame the hectic schedule for the team's poor performance.

"We know how important it was to win against Delhi. We played in Mohali a couple of days back and then travelled straight to Delhi. It gets tiring but this can't be an excuse for the defeat. The guys are really pumped up. We have two more games left and if we win those matches, we might sneak in (playoffs)," he added. (IANS)