Phase 1 review of RCB's Performance in IPL3
Match1: RCB v/s KKR
Aah the First match against KKR was something a rusty performance, stilloil had to be seeped into the RCB machine which had not played all year...and coming from a heartbreaking finals loss against the Deccan chargers last time was still fresh in their mind in IPL3 which was happening in India after a years break so seeing that huge crowd that KKR at Eden gardens gets was something not that RCB wanted in the first match. They would have done if it was a home match with the amazing crowd that RCB gets at Chinnaswamy stadium. As it was the first match the Team was getting used the usual with Kallis getting into his own from the first match itself scoring a fine 65 but other than that credible performance came from Dravid and Uthappa who were sent very low down the order, but managed to put up a paltry 135 in 20 overs, a bad day at office, And 135 was not enough challenging for KKR who were playing in their home with such huge support you accept the home team to cross the hurdle with ease, though RCB tried to tie them down but KKR's batsmen ensured there were no upsets in their home ground. With Manoj tiwary's exceptional man of the match performance proved difficult for RCB to make any match out of the low score. And in the end the won the match with 4 balls to spare. An offday for RCB who don't give any freebies under Ray jennings & Kumble's astute leadership.
Match 2: RCB v/s Kings 11
After the bad start to the IPL3 campaign, now RCB team was playing at home which has the most vociferous crowd anywhere in India. And you have to be in the stadium to experience the decibel levels and to feel the energy that crowd rubs them on to the RCB team at the ground....it will be electrifying, and even before the match started the crowd was making so much noise that as if the RCB team had won already and that is the spirit of Bangalore crowd, they are hardcore supporters and will be with them always even with the result not going on ourside....But this match was really important to make an first impression at home...Kings 11 played really well to get a score above 200. Where Bisla and Bopara held the innings together to get to that sort of score.
And watching the match live at the stadium we all thought whatever the result may be we'll enjoy the match, but had that gut feeling that RCB will win this match and they did win indeed in style and showed all other teams what RCB team is capable of. It was Kallis and Uthappa who took the game away from Kings 11 and it was a Ugadi festival day for Karnataka a new year infact, and it was a perfect gift for Bangalore and Karnataka people. That one over from Sreesanth where Uthappa score 25 runs in it is still fresh in my mind I can't forget that clean hitting by any batsmen in world at the moment, it was one of the best innings that i got to watch in live and the chase was totally anchored by kallis who scored a brilliant 89. And the rest was taken care by Virat in the end and manish in the beginning....A perfect start to IPL3 campaign by winning their first home match infront of a sell out crowd. It was Uthappa who had reborn that day
Match3: RCB v/s RR
This was the match which made yusuf pathan look like a mortal after all these days...Nobody had knew how to tackle this monsterous batsman who was taking opposition on his own and winning games for RR single handedly, the excellent pitch at chinnaswamy helped our bowlers looke menacing with short pitched stuff, and even a bowler like Vinay kumar and Praveen who bowl in mid 120's seemed threatening enough on Bangalore pitch. Even though Dale steyn didn't pick up a wicket he maintained pressure and didn't give away any runs with his menacing pace and other bowlers around him picked up those wickets. And they didn't let yusuf getaway as usually he does and trying many things against the short pitched stuff gave away his wicket which led to the down fall of RR and Shilpa shetty was too embarrassed to see her team go down like this even not putting up 100 on the board then again it was a clinical performance from Manish pandey and Kallis, and teams were unable to dislodge kallis wicket and he was having a purple patch in the shortest format of the game. They easily won the game for us with 9 overs to spare and it was a comprehensive second consequitive home win for the RCB and got into a momentum of winning. As they all say keeping the momentum the advantage is very important in the short format of the game.
Match4: RCB v/s MI<
With the momentum in hand RCB looked like the only team which could beat Mumbai Indians at their Home turf and even they had a good momentum in their hand where they had won both the match which they played before. So it was a clash of Titans where the Ambani team was taking on the Mallya team down from the south, and the new entry into IPL with his son Siddharth Mallya heading Royal challengers sports. With Father son duo heading the RCB team it was a good thing for the team. Now coming to the match RCb bowled well with Steyn again proving why he is the worlds no.1 bowler and got himself 3 wickets and Vinay kumar proving why he is a good bowler and justified his selection with a 3 wicket haul where he took 2 wickets in a over and the priced scalp being none other than Sachin tendulkar, that must have been his best performance in IPL till date and become a strong contender for the purple cap with some wickets in his kitty.
Mumbai played well to get a score of above 150 and gave their bowlers something to bowl at and Mumbai Indians have a very good bowling attack in the IPL than other teams, with Zaheer and Malinga heading the attack and aptly supported by Bhajji and then the 2 westindians with Bravo and pollard with their medium pacers. So it was a strong attack which needed RCB to get going from the word go...Once again Manish pandey and Jaque kallis giving us a great start with manish scoring 40 odd and Kallis with another 50 to his name and still nobody could get him out and it was time that they gave him his orange cap to him and looked like he will be wearing till the tournament ends, that was the form that kallis was in..and others chipped in around and won the game for us comfortably with 4 balls to spare. A good game of cricket at the Brabourne stadium which RCB throughly enjoyed and took the top spot in table pushing Mumbai to the 2nd place... Once again Kallis was the man of the match for his brilliant 66...And surely RCB had the momentum and gave a sneek peak to other teams in IPL that RCB means business no freebies, and it was great to see that Rahul dravid one of the champion batsmen had nothing do with the scheme of things, the batting line up was so strong that Dravid had to be pushed down the order and he was happy to go down the order untill the team was doing good and winning matches for them.<
Match5: RCB v/s CSK
Every time Karnataka plays Tamilnadu in the Ranji trophy always there will be high intensity in those games and the neighbours will not give an inch with players always giving more than 100% always, It was a similar case in this match where the Bangalore team took on a team from Chenna. And there was something missing in the CSK team with Mahendra singh Dhoni not playing the match due to injury, but there was a bigger scare interms of Matthew hayden with his Mongoose bat at the helm taking on bowlers at his will. All said and done it was the time for the match to take place infron of a sellout crowd, it was a sea of red people now had totally got into city based loyalty where every one was in red it was like the whole town was painted in red when people saw the Match in TV, RCB had a shaky start with kallis getting out for the first time and even Manish didn't come good that day these were the guys who had given us all those good starts till now, and now this exposed the middle order which till now didn't had to chance to spend time in the middle in the earlier matches and they too crumbled, the score was somewhat 100 odd in the 15th over, but there was something special about to unfold and that happened on that day, Uthappa once again taking head on with the CSK bowlers thrashed them all over the park after the 15th over Balaji had a good taste of it and in those melee of sixes one six eventually would have biggest six of all time if it would had not crased with the top tier sheet it infact broke that sheet in the top tier and camedown, that was the power with which Uthappa was hitting those balls, and showed the world why he is considered as one of the dangerous batsmen in the world and it was sad to see that he was not in the World t20 probables. With that blistering knock RCB reached a commanding score of 171 and with the pitch that we have in Bangalore which is fast and seaming the score looked like a difficult to chase down for the CSK.
CSK didn't began that well with PK getting the wicket in his first over or so and then Matthew hayden was coming good but the brilliant fielding from dravid to run him out was exceptional, I think the Mongoose bat had run him out that day, if he had any other normal bat in his hand he would have made it to the screase. and then Vinay getting 4 wickets at regular intervals meant that CSK scored only 135 and lost the match by 36 runs, and RCB surely were enjoying playing the matches at their homeground, with that tremendous crowd support it was a good win again topped the charts with maximum no. of points. Surely CSK were missing Dhoni very badly. But Anil kumble the astute captain at the helm brought in all his experience to get RCB where they were from the mid IPL2 in south Africa. He had the best economy rate in IPL by giving away only 15 runs in his 4 overs. And Uthappa getting the man of the match for his histrionics with his bat.
Match6: RCB v/s DD
RCB who had a great momentum till now some what got into a fix with this match and found themselves wanting till the end of the match, it was David warner who scored a auick 33 from 14 balls that gave them the momentum in their innings and a good show by AB de villiers, but it was an unknown entity called Kedar jadav who scored a brilliant 50 and had a good partnership with Mac donald in the end with his uncanny style of batting he took the game somewhat away from the RCB with a huge score of 183 on the board.
The RCB innings somewhat struggled from the beginning as Nannes with his great and then the newcomers like Umesh yadav who consistently bowled 140 k's and didn't let the batsmen getaway and Mishra and Mac donald doing the job for them in the end..Kallis looked totally out of sorts and scored less than a ball 27 and uthappa who had a great time till now got out cheaply and Dravid who got chance in this match was run out just for 1 run. Though Virat kohli looked good but RCB fell very short of 183 and were able to score only 166 in their quota of 20 overs, Kedar jadhav for his brilliant 50 got himself a man of the match. A dissapointing day for the fans in ground and elsewhere...RCB lost their first home game and was a forgettable day at the office. And some dose to Jennings and Co. to analyse what went wrong.
Match7: RCB v/s CSK
It was time that we ventured outside home and head to the neighbouring state Chennai to take on CSK in their own den much was expected from RCB after that loss against DD at home, So RCB did some changes to the team which dropped both Morgan and Boucher for this match, I think Morgan didn't get enough chance to showcase his skills but believe me ppl he is one helluva cricketer who scores runs in the most orthodox fashion and gets the job done for that matter. And they brought in KP and white for this match....but kallis somewhat looked out of touch completely and was playing these matches as a ODI lately scoring run a ball.....and in the end RCB managed only 160 odd in 20 overs.
But it was a day of Murali vijay who took the game away from us with this brilliant 78 from just 38 balls was amazing everybody beared the brunt of vijay's innings and this rubbed off to other players like Raina who scored a good 45 runs innings and ensured CSK won the game comfortable with one over to spare in the end, It was a fitting reply to RCB which they dished out to CSK when they were in Bangalore. Also it was Dhoni's calming influence on the team which made CSK come good on that day. And the man of the Match was Murali vijay for his brilliant innings.