Ruthless Virat sinks Sunrisers
Royal Challengers Bangalore won their game against the Sunrisers Hyderabad by 7 wickets on Tuesday evening at Bangalore, Virat Kohli avenging the Super Over loss in Hyderabad on Sunday night with an emphatic 93* to break Hyderabad's back.
Earlier, Sunrisers Hyderabad won the toss and chose to bat first. Akshath Reddy’s aggressive approach was calmly dealt with by RP Singh who had replaced Karun Nair in the Royal Challengers line up.
Kumar Sangakkara and Parthiv Patel were beginning to get a move on when RCB’s two Muralis struck, the Sri Lankan (1/23) removing the Indian southpaw in the 8th over and the Indian (1/21) removing the Sri Lankan southpaw in the 11th over. Thisara Perera muscled a 24 ball 40 (1x4, 4x6), adding 80 for the 4th wicket with Cameron White off just 44 balls before he was bowled by Singh. White carried on and brought up his fifty (52, 34b, 3x4, 3x6), punishing Vinay Kumar (1/43) for 30 runs off his last two overs before holing out off the same bowler.
Jaydev Unadkat (0/29) had bowled loose deliveries in every over and Moises Henriques (0/18) went for plenty in his only over. RP Singh (3/27) though finished with another wicket in the last over and conceding just 6 runs in it as the Sunrisers posted a total of 161/6.
Mayank Agarwal was back in his favourite position, opening the batting for RCB and he raced to a quickfire 29 (20b, 3x4, 2x6) before being foxed by a riser from Perera. Chris Gayle had looked uncertain against Dale Steyn at the other end but lost his wicket to Ishant Sharma, nicking a gently away seaming delivery to the wicketkeeper.
AB de Villiers, fresh off the plane from South Africa was scratchy but added a quick 49 with Virat Kohli for the third wicket. While AB tried to find his timing, Virat continued in the form he had left off at Hyderabad on Sunday. He was decisive, seeing out overs from Ishant and Mishra to gather himself before attacking Perera, Mishra, Reddy and White, moving from 5 off 7b to 37 off 22b in the time.
The stretch saw RCB loot 44 runs in last 3.5 overs before AB’s (15, 15b, 1x6) attempt to end White’s over with another boundary ended in him holing out to deep midwicket. RCB were 96/3 at that stage with Kohli the only remaining specialist batsman and 66 needed off 48b.
With Henriques for company, Kohli played out Steyn’s two remaining overs which Sangakkara used as a last gamble. Kohli survived, bringing up his half century off 31b in the time, reaching 51 off 32b when Steyn’s quota ended. RCB were on 117/3 after 15 overs at that point with 45 required off 5 overs.
Kohli took just 16 balls to get there, using his feet to blast 21 runs off Mishra’s last over, getting some luck in a 16 run over off Perera and hitting Ishant for two fours in the 18th to end the game. It was a total demolition job and it was done with sheer class. Kohli had reached a stunning 93* (47b, 11x4, 4x6) when the game ended, scoring at a dizzying strike rate of 197.87 to sink the Sun Risers.
He picked up the Man of the Match award for his knock and the unbeaten 66 run partnership for the 4th wicket off just 34 balls. Gayle had overtaken David Warner to take the Orange Cap early in the RCB innings but Virat had 57 runs between him and Gayle to take the Orange Cap by the end of the game.