The business end of IPL 7 is here and as the table stands right now, there is just 1 spot for 3 teams to qualify for the playoffs. For RCB, the equation is pretty simple. Win 3 out of the next 3 matches and qualify for the playoffs leaving KKR and SRH - the other contenders behind. With matches against SRH, KKR and CSK yet to be played, RCB need every ounce of their talent and strength to pull through.
Virat Kohli, the skipper of RCB has not had the best of IPL campaign so far this season. He has scored just 181 runs so far in the 11 innings he has played so far. However, he showed some glimpses of his brilliant form returning to him in the last match against CSK on a difficult Ranchi pitch. Stabilizing the innings in the middle order and building momentum, Kohli’s knock was pivotal in their victory. Having won the last 2 matches, Kohli’s confidence as a captain must have changed for the better. With just one route to look at now, Kohli’s mindset should be clear of any other complications.
Kohli is a naturally aggressive cricketer and his ability to channel it in the right direction could be the make or break move in RCB’s bid to qualify. He has proved it in previous IPL campaigns and also on the international stage on a consistent basis. By using his aggression to galvanize his players and get the best out of them is something that should be at the top of the priority list for Kohli.
One aspect of Kohli’s batting that we have not seen much of is staying positive and taking the bowlers on. Of course he has tried his best, but it has not quite come off so far. Kohli getting back among the runs will be gold dust for RCB as he bats at no.3 or opens the innings and will provide the stability to the innings. It would also allow the explosive and in-form AB de Villiers and Yuvraj Singh to play with more freedom and wreak more havoc than they have been doing so far.
There is absolutely no doubt over the calibre of Virat Kohli, whether in terms of his batting or his captaincy. All that he needs to do is pull himself back together, which we have already seen him do in RCB’s last few games. With him doing full justice to his talent, RCB might be playing in the playoffs next week and looking to win the whole tournament.