RCB News

The Knight Sets On RCB Hopes In IPL 7

Thu, 22nd, May 2014
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RCB travelled to Eden Gardens to face KKR at home in a make or break match. On winning the toss, Virat Kohli decided to chase. He rang in 2 changes - Yogesh Takawale and Ashok Dinda in for Parthiv Patel and Varun Aaron. Gautam Gambhir also made 2 changes to his KKR outfit, with Vinay Kumar and Morne Morkel coming in for Piyush Chawla and Pat Cummins.

RCB made a good start to proceedings with Starc managing to dismiss the KKR captain, Gautam Gambhir in the very first over. Dinda struck in the 4th over at his home ground by dismissing Manish Pandey who had hit a few boundaries to build momentum in the favour of the hosts. Yusuf Pathan hit a couple of boundaries in the powerplay to take KKR to 45/2 in 6 overs.

The very next over, Yusuf Pathan gifted his wicket away, run out by the Kohli-Takawale combo. He did score 22(13) though to give a leg-up to the next batting pair. Uthappa started hitting shots of his own after playing the silent role uptil now. Shakib manipulated the field very well and kept rotating the strike, hitting the occasional boundary along the way. Uthappa brought up yet another half century, making it his 8th consecutive score of more than 40, a world record in all T20s. Their run rate went north when Shakib smashed Yuzvendra Chahal for 24 runs in the 15th over. By 16 overs, KKR were poised for a big total at 150/3.

Shakib hit a half century too and KKR managed to squeeze out 16 runs from Dinda in the 18th over. Abu Nechim disturbed the woodwork when Shakib tried to hit him over the keeper and he departed for a well made 60. Uthappa finished off the innings well by hitting 2 boundaries off the last 2 balls by Starc and ending his innings at an unbeaten 83(51). KKR ended their innings with 195/4 on the board.

Chris Gayle’s poor run continued as Umesh Yadav trapped him plumb in front of the wicket with a swinging delivery leaving RCB a wicket down in just the second over of a tough chase. Yogesh Takawale smacked Morne Morkel all around the park just like he did in the first leg of this fixture. Along with Virat Kohli, he took RCB to 36/1 in the powerplay.

Kohli then took a liking to the pace of Vinay Kumar and hit him out of the park to snatch 17 runs from the 9th over. With the spin duo of Narine and Shakib into the attack, the batsmen found it tough to put them away. Narine got his reward when he sent both Kohli and Takawale back to the hut in the 13th over. Yuvraj Singh gave some hope to the RCB supporters when he scored 22 runs from the 16th over by Umesh Yadav. At the end of the 16th over, RCB were 128/3 and needed 68 to win from the next 4 overs.

Sunil Narine practically finished off the game in the 17th over by picking up the wickets of Yuvraj Singh and AB de Villiers, grabbing the Purple Cap in the process. Sachin Rana and Mitchell Starc played out the next 3 overs and KKR won the match comfortably in the end by a margin of 30 runs. This result sees KKR qualify for the playoffs and RCB knocked out of running.
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RCB News

RCB Face KKR With Their Backs Against The Wall

Thu, 22nd, May 2014
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The Eden Gardens has been the stronghold of the Kolkata Knight Riders for a long time. The pitch there is tailor made for the way they play the match. With no shortage of quality spinners in their lineup and a tinge of green, all the bowlers get an opportunity to have their say. Stroke making is good on the pitch once the batsmen get in with the grass holding a dry pitch together.


Head To Head:
KKR and RCB have played against each other 13 times and the win column just nudges to KKR with 7 wins. At Eden Gardens, the hosts have a better track record with 3 of the 4 matches going in their favour.

In their previous encounter this season, Chris Lynn’s superb catch to send back AB de Villiers saw KKR steal a win to pull the rug from under RCB’s feet in the UAE, putting RCB on a slide that saw them lose two more games on the trot. RCB would be hoping to get back at them and spoil their party, while also keeping their own playoff chances alive.

Previous Match:
KKR played their first match at home against CSK last time and showed just what home support can do. They demolished CSK with their brilliant team display. Robin Uthappa was brilliant yet again, scoring a half century at the top of the order to lay the platform for chasing 154. Shakib Al Hasan finished the game off with his skillful batting to give KKR the win with 2 overs to spare.

In a virtually must win match for both teams, RCB failed to deliver the goods when they faced SRH at Hyderabad. Chris Gayle who is in the side to provide early momentum, did quite the contrary by eating up dot balls and not really scoring much. Virat Kohli came good with his first half century of the season and his effort took RCB to a respectable score of 160. The match was truly lost when SRH did not lose a single wicket until the 13th over. Half their work was already done and the batsmen to follow finished the game off without much trouble.

Preview Of The Teams:
KKR have been in good form off late and seem to be on the track for a playoff spot. With only home games to play from here, the win is surely in their sails. The opening pair of Gautam Gambhir and Robin Uthappa has been brilliant with Uthappa in prime form being the 2nd highest run-scorer in the tournament so far. In Shakib Al Hasan, KKR have the perfect all rounder to balance the squad with his left arm spin and adaptable batting. Sunil Narine has been the hub of their bowling attack with plenty of able support from others like Piyush Chawla and Umesh Yadav. KKR’s bench strength is good as Pat Cummins showed on his IPL debut. With all the facets of the line up working well, KKR look a formidable side.

RCB desperately need to win this match. If they don’t, then they are completely out of the running for the coveted playoff spot and this very fact may motivate them to push on. Chris Gayle has not been able to get RCB the blazing starts that we are so accustomed to. Virat Kohli finally came good in the previous match and AB de Villiers and Yuvraj Singh have mostly been good throughout. Yuzvendra Chahal and Mitchell Starc have been their most consistent performers with the ball by picking wickets and also not giving away too many runs. Varun Aaron has also picked up the most wickets for RCB this season, but he has also leaked runs at times when restricting the opponent is the need of the over.

Key Players:
Robin Uthappa was in top form in the domestic season, and he has carried on in the IPL for KKR. Scoring over 40 in almost all his innings, Uthappa is someone who KKR rely on to give them a good start with the bat. Shakib Al Hasan has also been a vital cog in the wheel by contributing heavily in all 3 departments. The fact that he is a brilliant team player gives him some more brownie points. Umesh Yadav after having an ordinary start to the competition has finally started delivering, and has been on the money with his pace and accuracy.

RCB heavily rely on Virat Kohli to steer and give direction to the innings from the top of the order. Yuvraj Singh and AB de Villiers have been the top run getters for RCB this season and the middle order and the flourish in the end depends on how these 2 go. As mentioned earlier, Mitchell Starc has been the spearhead of the bowling attack with his pace and swing. He does not leak too many runs and also picks up a few wickets in every match. With Yuzvendra Chahal providing some superb leg breaks and googlies, there is definitely some variety in the bowling attack.
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RCB Blogs

Pick of the Pics

Wed, 21st, May 2014
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royal challengers

RCB ended their 14-match campaign in IPL 7 with some bittersweet memories. Here are some snaps which highlight some of the most memorable moments of the season gone by:


royal challengers

1) DD vs RCB - Virat Kohli and Yuvraj Singh were involved in an 82-run stand to take RCB across the line with ease.

royal challengers

2) RCB vs MI - Yuzvendra Chahal put in a stellar performance against his former team, MI, with figures of 4-0-17-2.

royal challengers

3) RCB vs KKR - Varun Aaron ruffled the opposition with his pace and bagged figures of 4-0-16-3.

royal challengers

4) RR vs RCB – Mitchell Starc picked up 2 wickets in a lost cause against RR.

royal challengers

5) KXIP vs RCB – Chris Gayle returned to the side after a back injury and showed glimpses of his explosive self.

royal challengers

6) RCB vs SRH – AB de Villiers took on Dale Steyn to win the first home game for RCB in IPL 7.

royal challengers

7) MI vs RCB – Chris Gayle and Parthiv Patel put on a 50-run stand, but RCB ended up on the losing side.

royal challengers

8) RCB vs KXIP – Yuzvendra Chahal registered economical figures of 4-0-23-2 on a day when the bowlers took some stick.

royal challengers

9) RCB vs RR – AB de Villiers and Yuvraj Singh compiled 132 runs for the 4th wicket to post a mammoth total for RR to chase.

royal challengers

10) Yuvraj Singh scored a belligerent 68*(29) in a match-winning effort.

royal challengers

11) AB de Villiers finished off the match in style to top an all-round performance by the team.

royal challengers

12) Virat Kohli scored his first half century of the season! Unfortunately, RCB lost in the final over of the match.

royal challengers

13) After Uthappa and Shakib posted a century stand for KKR, a pumped up Yogesh Takawale started off the chase well for RCB.

royal challengers

14) Virat Kohli played a lone hand in RCB's Go Green game and registered a half-century to bring RCB's season to an end.
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RCB News

Do Or Die situation for both teams at Hyderabad

Tue, 20th, May 2014
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The pitch at the stadium in Hyderabad is batting friendly with even bounce. The flat track assists good shot making and playing through the line. The last time RCB played a match here, it ended in a Super Over. The team chasing has won in all 3 matches played at this ground in IPL 7; something that should make the decision to bowl first a no-brainer.

Head To Head
RCB and SRH have faced each other only thrice, with RCB winning 2 of these games. The 1 match which SRH won had gone right down to the wire which had to be decided through a super over. With the prospect of AB de Villiers to face off against Dale Steyn again, we could see some fireworks again with AB already having emerged on top twice.

Previous Match:
RCB showed real resolve in defeating CSK in their own den owing to a good all round team performance. The bowlers did immensely well in restricting an explosive lineup to a score below 140. Muttiah Muralitharan found wonderful turn at Ranchi so it might be tempting to see if he can replicate that at Hyderabad. Abu Nechim was a revelation with his death bowling. RCB’s top order finally dug in and ground out a solid partnership at the top, leaving the in-form AB de Villiers and Yuvraj Singh with just enough time and work to do.

SRH made a bold and brave move in their last match, replacing Shikhar Dhawan as the captain with Darren Sammy assuming control for the rest of the tournament. This move was made to allow Dhawan to focus solely on his batting and get big scores at the top of the order with complete freedom. In their previous game against KKR, all the top order batsmen managed to get off to starts but failed to carry on to hit a big one. This has been the problem for SRH for the majority of the competition with the top heavy batting not firing as well as they would have liked. The bowling gave too many runs away as well by bowling hittable lines and lengths.

Preview Of The Teams:
RCB need to win all three of their remaining games and SRH are one of their competitors for the final slot in the play offs. Both are on equal points and a win is the only result that will help either. The team which loses today is practically knocked out of the reckoning for that coveted spot.

RCB have had their woes this season but it has all started to come together for them right when it matters the most. The batting lineup showed grit in the previous match on an extremely tough pitch while the hitting of AB de Villiers and Yuvraj Singh has put the opposing teams in a spot of bother. With Varun Aaron, Mitchell Starc and Yuzvendra Chahal all having picked up more than 10 wickets, the core of the bowling department looks in good hands. With the mastery of Muttiah Muralitharan and raw potential of Abu Nechim, things look good for RCB.
SRH have been pulling through the competition with their bowling unit doing most of the hard work. Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been their best player so far with Dale Steyn looking lethal with his pace. Amit Mishra and Karn Sharma have been good with their leg spin but Irfan Pathan has been ordinary to say the least. The top heavy batting lineup has not done their best with Dhawan and Finch not doing well consistently. Warner has been their best batsman but has been held back constantly. Naman Ojha has been a respite, playing well in the last couple of matches.

Key Players:

Parthiv Patel was a crucial part of SRH’s lineup and has a good understanding of the conditions. His own form for RCB hasn’t been as consistent as he would like. Back in the opener’s slot, he would want to lay his claim for once and for all at Hyderabad. His task would be to go for the big hits considering Chris Gayle’s go-slow approach this season.

Shikhar Dhawan was replaced as SRH skipper before their game against KKR to allow him to concentrate on his batting. He couldn’t respond with runs on Sunday but will want to show that he is not easily affected and can still play those dazzling knocks, making him an adversary to watch out for on Tuesday. Naman Ojha and David Warner are two other Sunrisers batsmen in the middle of a good run and will be crucial targets for the bowlers.

Dale Steyn will be eager for a third set against AB de Villiers even though recent games at SRH’s home ground suggest an encounter would go in the batsman’s favour. Hell hath no fury like the fastest bowler in the world scorned.
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An all-round effort by RCB seals tough away win!

Sun, 18th, May 2014
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RCB faced CSK at their new home ground, the JSCA stadium - Ranchi. MS Dhoni won the toss and elected to bat first, having made 2 changes to his side - David Hussey and Mithun Manhas coming on for Faf du Plessis and Vijay Shankar. RCB made just the 1 change with Varun Aaron coming back into the side in place of Vijay Zol.

Brendon McCullum was looking promising in the start, hitting the ball with immense power and timing. But Varun Aaron countered the threat in his 2nd over when he dismissed both the dangerous batsmen - McCullum and Smith, in the span of 3 balls to push CSK on the back foot. With 2 new batsmen at the crease in Suresh Raina and David Hussey, CSK looked to regroup and avoid losing more wickets. RCB continued bowling tight overs to restrict CSK to 39/2 in the powerplay overs.

Things were quiet from the CSK point of view with not many runs scored in the middle overs. David Hussey was looking a bit rusty after his long layoff from competitive cricket, but Suresh Raina got some runs under his belt with some glorious strokes and intelligent maneuvering of the bowlers. CSK were just starting to get set to launch an onslaught, after building a decent platform, but Muralitharan struck by dismissing the Hussmeister. After 16 overs, CSK were 114/3 with a set Suresh Raina and dangerous MS Dhoni at the crease.

Abu Nechim bowled economically and topped it up by dismissing MS Dhoni cheaply for just 7 runs. Some excellent death bowling ensured no boundaries were hit in the last 4 overs. Raina and Jadeja had to make do with just some good running between the wickets to take them to a dicey score of 138/4.

Parthiv Patel started off the chase in brilliant fashion, hitting 2 boundaries off the first over by Mohit Sharma. CSK started tightening the screws from here on by unleashing a spin barrage which put the batsmen in a real fix. Parthiv Patel was dismissed by Ravichandran Ashwin and Virat Kohli was the next man in. They were just not getting the bowlers away, either for boundaries or singles. At the end of the powerplay, RCB were struggling at 17/1.

CSK continued to attack with their spinners but RCB did not lose any more wickets. Slowly and steadily, Kohli and Gayle got into their groove. Jadeja managed to get Kohli stumped and almost dismissed AB de Villiers the same way on the very next ball. Gayle ended that over on a positive note hitting a four and a six to get RCB closer. At the end of 16 overs, RCB were 96/2.

Dhoni surprised with his tactics by entrusting his spinners with the job of bowling the death overs. His spinners bowled 18 off the 20 overs in the innings. The 17th over by Ashwin shifted the momentum in favour of the RCBians as they hit 2 sixes. Though Gayle lost his wicket in the effort, RCB were in the driving seat now. Hussey conceded 15 runs in the next over but also picked up the wicket of AB de Villiers. Ravindra Jadeja caused some problems to Yuvraj Singh and 10 runs were needed off the last over.

Dhoni tossed the ball to Hussey and it was upto Yuvraj to Seize the Day. Yuvraj smacked 9 off the first 3 balls but Rana fell on the next ball. Abu Nechim walked in and coolly smacked a boundary off his first ball to get the win for RCB, and keep their hopes alive in the competition.
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RCB News

RCB face daunting task at M Chinnaswamy

Tue, 13th, May 2014
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Home turf hasn't been kind to RCB this season with one win in three games, that too on the back of a sensational innings from AB de Villiers. An all round performance by Yuvraj Singh too went in vain as surplus extras and the small boundaries hurt the team. Allan Donald will have to work that into the aggression that has given the pace department its edge this season.

Head To Head
RCB and DD have faced each other 12 times and the former holds the edge having won 7 games. Importantly, RCB has won all 3 of the previous encounters and DD will want to take advantage of RCB’s poor run to break the streak. They have already played 1 match against each other this season with RCB emerging comfortable victors at UAE.

Previous Match:
RCB’s previous match against RR saw the scratchy form of Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli continue but Vijay Zol showed some promise on his debut. AB de Villiers continued with his run scoring display and Yuvraj Singh struck gold with his blitz of 83(38) balls and 4 wicket haul. The bowlers did well in the first half of the innings by picking early wickets and stemming the flow of runs, but the slog overs took an ugly turn when Steve Smith and James Faulkner smashed 65 off 17 balls to chase down 190.
DD played their last match against SRH where the batsmen could not do much to muster a competitive total. Kevin Pietersen was looking decent but could not continue his good work. All the batsmen got off to starts, but could not convert it into anything substantial just like KP. In the end they scored just 143 off their 20 overs. The bowlers did not have much to play with as a rain inflicted match saw SRH winning after scoring 44 in the 4.2 overs they played. Imran Tahir made his debut for DD and would be hoping to make a mark in the next match.

Preview Of The Teams:
RCB need to win all five of their remaining games to even contemplate qualifying for the playoffs. Hard calls need to be made on the batting; Chris Gayle's injury is hampering the team and the bowling could use Ravi Rampaul with Dinda making way for a batsman like Yogesh Takawale or Tanmay Mishra. Virat Kohli needs to get his act together and start leading from the front by scoring some runs for the side. AB de Villiers has been the only consistent batsman in the team and Yuvraj Singh showed what he can do in the previous match. RCB would be hoping that he continues with his form both with the bat and ball. Yuzvendra Chahal has been the best bowler for RCB so far. Varun Aaron started off well, but has been unable to take wickets with batsmen content to play him off in the last couple of games. Mitchell Starc has also been good, but loses his calm and accuracy at times which affects his performance.

The main issue for the boys from DD is an underperforming batting order. Quinton de Kock is promising at the start, but definitely needs to do more. The form of skipper, Kevin Pietersen is the biggest concern but the batting friendly conditions at Chinnaswamy could help his cause. Dinesh Karthik has done decently and only JP Duminy has been consistent. Kedar Jadhav has done well in the last few games by providing the final flourish. The bowling department has been spearheaded by Wayne Parnell who has had his fair share of dot balls. Apart from him, nobody else has quite impressed the way they should have. Mohammed Shami has to pull up his socks, being their prime domestic bowler. The addition of leggie Imran Tahir to the side could bolster their attack and add another dimension to it. Expect DD to drop de Kock and Kaul from the last match and bring back Murali Vijay and Wayne Parnell to give more stability to the side.

Key Players:
The captains of both teams promoted themselves to the opening position in a bid to address problems in the top order. While Kevin Pietersen was great in his cameo, Virat Kohli failed and both skippers will try to play a match winning innings tonight. Imran Tahir has been brought into the mix by DD to pick some wickets and it will be interesting to see how he goes. Yuvraj Singh would be expected to continue with his brilliant effort from the last match.
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RCB News

RR's late order blitz prevails over all round Yuvraj show

Sun, 11th, May 2014
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Having won the toss, Virat Kohli decided to bat first in a deviation from his previous decisions this season. Changing his strategies from the onset, Kohli decided to come out to open the innings along with Chris Gayle. The ploy did not work that well after Kohli hit one straight to third man and was dismissed on 4(9). Vijay Zol, the 19-year old debutant was the next at the crease and played a promising innings, going after the RR attack. After 6 overs, RCB were placed at 31/1.

Chris Gayle’s ragged form this IPL continued as he was dismissed after an uncomfortable 19(25), making way for the in form AB de Villiers to come in. Zol was dismissed soon after for 16(14) after hitting a few boundaries. The rebuilding of the innings was now up to AB de Villiers and Yuvraj Singh. Yuvraj took the onus onto himself, playing aggressively from the start of his innings. de Villiers obliged by providing the support from the other end; playing the anchor role to perfection. By the end of 15 overs, RCB were poised at 106/3.

From here, both the batsmen shifted gears to start an onslaught upon the RR bowlers. All the Aussie bowlers in Richardson, Watson and Faulkner had a tough time in containing the outrage by the Men In Red at the crease. Yuvraj finally got out in the 19th over but he had already done all the damage. He scored a blistering 83(38) before he headed back to the dugout, his best batting performance across all seasons of the IPL. AB de Villiers continued the carnage in the last over of the match, hitting 2 sixes off Faulkner. He was dismissed for 58(32). In the end, RCB finished at a massive 190/5.

RR started off the chase in great fashion with Ajinkya Rahane and Karun Nair playing some stylish shots. Their intent was clear in the way they played: get quick runs without losing wickets and taking minimum risks. By the end of 6 overs, RR were at 45/0.

Chahal was the first man to take a wicket as he dismissed Rahane off the first ball of his spell. Yuvraj Singh took 2 big wickets off his 2nd over, getting Shane Watson and Stuart Binny and struck again in his 3rd over by catching the explosive youngster, Sanju Samson off his own bowling. Yuvraj’s fairytale performance continued as he rattled the stumps of Karun Nair to pick his 4th wicket of the match and hence getting his best bowling performance in IPL. At the end of 15 overs, RR were in trouble at 122/5 and needing 69 to win in the last 5 overs.

Things started to turn lopsided for RCB at the end of the innings, with the Aussie duo of Steve Smith and James Faulkner smashing the ball for all their money’s worth. The normally hard to put away Mitchell Starc was attacked by the duo, throwing him off his line and taking the 17th over for 21 runs. The 18th over by Ashoke Dinda then proved to be the nail in the coffin for RCB as he went for 23 runs. From here, RR needed to score 21 runs from the last 2 overs and it was their match to lose. With some brilliant hitting, RR scored the remainder of the runs in the next 5 balls off Aaron and came back to win the match with 7 balls to spare.

Despite their best performance as a team this season, RCB lost a game that seemed close. The team now must win all its remaining matches and hope that some other results go its way for a chance of making it to the playoffs.

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RCB News

A Challenging Battle Royale At M Chinnaswamy

Sun, 11th, May 2014
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On home turf, RCB look a totally different side in the way they play their cricket. With the backing of the fans, RCB won 7 of the 8 games played here in the previous season. AB de Villiers has done well in the two games at the ground this season and Chris Gayle will be raring to go too after a poor game against KXIP.

Ajinkya Rahane has a ton to remember the Chinnaswamy ground by while Karun Nair and Stuart Binny's familiarity with the ground and conditions make them threats.


Head To Head
RCB and RR have faced each other on 12 occasions with the honour shared at 6 wins apiece.

In the previous encounter between these 2 sides earlier this season, RR’s bowlers had mowed down RCB’s top order and the batsmen had completed a comfortable chase.

Previous Match:
RCB’s bowlers were commendable in keeping KXIP to 198/8, given that Yuvraj Singh & Harshal Patel had combined to concede 75 runs in the 4 overs they bowled. Harshal’s place may be under consideration with Ashok Dinda, Shadab Jakati, Abu Nechim or as a last resort, Sandeep Warrier being the alternatives.

RR’s bowlers seemed to be on a roll, taking a second hattrick in two games at Ahmedabad to restrict SRH to 134/9. But the batsmen came undone against discipline from SRH’s bowlers as Dale Steyn, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Amit Mishra and Karn Sharma combined to bowl them out for 102. It will be a hard hitting line-up looking to prove a point emphatically at the Chinnaswamy.

Preview Of The Teams:
RCB need to win all six of their remaining games and at least 5 of them to even contemplate qualifying. Hard calls need to be made on the batting and AB de Villiers’ form has to be capitalized on by promoting him in the order.

RR were the team who kept RCB to 70 in UAE and their recent bowling form suggests they’ve become even more dangerous.


Key Players:

The pressure is on for Virat Kohli and it’s not just his reputation as a batsman on the line but also his reputation as a performer under pressure and ability as captain that he needs to remind opposition of. Mitchell Starc has been one of the most reliable players in the tournament. He often gets the wickets that are needed at crucial junctures and also contributes a lot in the field with some brilliant catches.

Shane Watson will be disappointed that his team lost the previous game despite his hattrick. His own failure to take them across with the bat will push him to make amends at the M Chinnaswamy with its short boundaries and excellent bounce. Having said that, Pravin Tambe has been as good as ever with his incredible display of traditional leg spin bowling.
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RCB News

The Kings March Past The Challengers To Record Another Win

Fri, 9th, May 2014
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RCB captain Virat Kohli won the toss and decided to field against the league leaders Kings XI Punjab. The opening pair of Virender Sehwag and Mandeep Singh got Punjab off to a flying start, adding 60 runs in less than 6 overs. The RCB bowlers conceded way too many extras with Mitchell Starc being the main culprit. However, the Bangalore boys were back in business as they took two quick wickets in successive overs. First it was Mandeep, who didn’t quite time the ball and heaved it straight to Albie Morkel at mid on to hand Harshal Patel his third wicket of the tournament.

In the next over, Yuzvendra Chahal, a strong contender to win the Emerging Player of the Tournament award, was introduced to curb the attacking strength of Sehwag and Glenn Maxwell. Sehwag fell to a nicely flighted delivery as Kohli held on to the catch. Sehwag’s dismissal normally halts the run scoring for any team, however, the leading run scorer of the tournament, Maxwell was determined to continue in the same attacking vein.

Maxwell hit two huge sixes and a four in an expensive Yuvraj over. The Australian tried to do the same against Chahal but the wily leggie came out on top as Maxwell’s effort to clear the rope was thwarted by a fine catch at deep mid-wicket by Starc. In the next over, Miller sent Aaron to the cleaners with three boundaries in one over. KXIP raced to 107/3 in their first 10 overs. Things weren’t looking that great for RCB but Morkel found some solace for Kohli’s side as he forced Bailey, who survived a strong LBW shout earlier, to edge the ball to the RCB wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel.

The Miller show continued in full flow as the South African made merry, going after both Starc and Patel to race to a half century off just 23 balls. One of his 3 sixes, recorded at 102m, went out of the stadium! It took RCB’s speedster Varun Aaron to provide the breakthrough as Chahal held on to a catch to end Miller’s onslaught. Miller’s knock of 66 runs in just 29 balls was the highlight of KXIP’s innings.

Miller’s departure in the 17th over resulted in the runs drying out for KXIP in the death overs. Starc captured two wickets in the last over to restrict the batting side to 198/6. Chahal was the star bowler for RCB with 2 wickets for 23 runs, while Patel who also captured 2 wickets, gave away 56 runs in 3 overs at an expensive economy rate of 18.66.

Chasing 199 for victory, RCB got off to a disastrous start. RCB’s destructive force Chris Gayle looked out of sorts right from the beginning, one mistimed shot early on going to KXIP’s opening bowler Sandeep Sharma, who fumbled the catch. Sharma made amends in his next over, forcing Gayle to edge it straight to the wicketkeeper, Wriddhiman Saha. The young pacer struck gold yet again as he got captain Kohli out off the very next ball. Kohli edged it to the keeper and the umpire raised his finger without delay. However, the RCB batsman decided to stay put as there was initial doubt on whether the keeper held on to the ball cleanly. After a long wait, the third umpire ruled in the fielding side’s favour much to Kohli’s frustration.

At the end of 5 overs, RCB was restricted to 22/2. The chase was hardly underway, yet RCB’s batting order looked brittle. The next RCB batsman to head to the dugout was Parthiv Patel who lofted the ball straight to Mandeep Singh at the sweeper position as Sharma claimed his third wicket. Sachin Rana, brought into the side to replace Rilee Rossouw, provided some fireworks in the beginning, but even he failed to capitalize on his start and was out bowled to Akshar Patel. At the end of 8 overs, RCB was 40/4 with Yuvraj Singh and AB de Villiers both fresh at the crease.

Yuvraj failed to live up to his reputation as he edged one straight to Sehwag which gave Shivam Sharma his maiden IPL wicket. New batsman Albie Morkel had a lifeline initially as Miller miscued a catch and the ball went over the fence. Morkel made up his mind to go after Maxwell with another six off the very next ball. However, in the next over, Morkel miscued another shot, and this time he paid the price as Bailey managed to hold on to the catch and the young off-spinner claimed his second wicket. But the equation was getting out of hand even for de Villiers as RCB needed 114 runs with 4 wickets in hand and only 8 overs remaining.

The two spinners, Patel and Sharma, bowled well in tandem to restrict the run flow. de Villiers was the lone warrior for RCB as he accelerated with 3 sixes off the slower bowlers. Mitchell Starc began to hit a few boundaries to raise the hopes of the Bangalore fans. They needed a whopping 90 runs in the last 5 overs for victory.

In the next over, de Villiers decided to hit the pedal, sending Balaji’s beamer to the stands. The next ball saw yet another six and it brought de Villiers’ 50 in just 25 balls. But even RCB’s superman couldn’t save the day as de Villiers skied the next delivery and the fielder, Akshar Patel, made no mistake. De Villiers departed after compiling a heroic lone hand 53.

There were over 5 overs to go but the result was already certain. It was a tall order for RCB’s tailenders as the wickets began to tumble. In the final over, Balaji brought an end to Starc’s resistance thanks to a diving catch by Miller. RCB finished at 166/9. KXIP’s Sandeep Sharma took home the Man of the Match award as he finished with 3 wickets and conceded only 25 runs in his 4 overs.

Having lost 5 out of their 8 matches, RCB now have to get some back-to-back wins and hope that other results favour them if they are to make it to the playoffs.
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RCB News

RCB Bank On Home Record Against Rampaging KXIP

Fri, 9th, May 2014
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Back at home, RCB look a totally different side in the way they play their cricket. With the backing of the fans, RCB won 7 of the 8 games played here in the previous season. In this season, RCB has played 1 match at Chinnaswamy so far and won it thanks to the heroics of AB de Villiers. With the short boundaries and an even pitch tailor-made for batting, the conditions suit RCB well. There is also bounce on offer for the bowlers and could help them a lot if they exploit it well.

Head To Head
RCB has played against KXIP on 13 occasions and the latter have the lead with 8 wins to 5 losses - a 61.54% win ratio. RCB haven’t defeated KXIP since IPL 2012 and will look to set the record straight in this match. Both teams boast of a star studded batting line-ups which can tear apart any attack and the battle is expected to be completely dominated by the willow-holders.

In the previous encounter between these 2 sides earlier this season, KXIP emerged victorious with a 5-wicket win with George Bailey and Rishi Dhawan showing composure with the bat after their top order had been tested for the first time in the tournament.

Previous Match:
RCB’s previous match was against MI at Wankhede which proved to be quite the fiery encounter. The tussle between Mitchell Starc and Kieron Pollard took centre stage in what was a brilliant match of cricket. MI won that game by a margin of 19 runs after RCB’s middle order failed to build on a thundering start by the top order.

In their last match, KXIP squared off against fellow top of the table aside, CSK. Batting first, they demolished CSK by setting a target of 232, scoring a whopping 162 runs from their last 10 overs. It was a Maxwell show yet again with captain Bailey adding the finishing touches in the end with a brilliant cameo. They followed it up with crucial wickets at the right times to win the match by a whopping 44 runs.

Preview Of The Teams:
RCB has had a hot and cold start to IPL 7 with 3 wins and 4 losses to their name. The form of the bowlers has been good with Yuzvendra Chahal and Mitchell Starc bagging most of the plaudits. Varun Aaron has also been good but strayed towards the expensive side in the previous match. The area of concern has been the batting which has failed to fire on all cylinders despite the marquee names. Chris Gayle teed off in the previous game but we are yet to witness his true dominance. Virat Kohli and Yuvraj Singh have not had the best of times either, and AB de Villiers has also played well in just two matches. New import Rilee Rossouw also has failed to make an impact in the 2 matches he has played so far. For RCB to do well, the senior players have to take the initiative and start performing to win the match.

KXIP has arguably been the best team in the competition so far, winning all their matches barring just 1 against MI. Glenn Maxwell has been the powerhouse of the side, scoring runs for fun. He is the leading run scorer of the tournament so far and has already come close to hitting a century 4 times in 7 innings. David Miller has done well too along with George Bailey who comes to the party when needed. Virender Sehwag has not been at his best, but he surely seems to be getting better with time. After a few poor games, the bowling has also found its feet. Mitchell Johnson has found his rhythm back, and Sandeep Sharma has been a revelation with his banana swing. With a strong bench as well, KXIP are the team to beat this season.

Key Players:
Chris Gayle will always remain the talking point for other teams with his intimidating presence and colossal shots enough to slaughter any opposition. Mitchell Starc has taken to IPL like a fish to water and has got RCB the crucial breakthroughs more often than not.

Glenn Maxwell has been the star of IPL 7 with his destructive performances constructing massive wins for KXIP. He is proving why he is regarded as a dangerous T20 player and writing the script for his own destiny. Sandeep Sharma has also delivered the goods after being taken in the team in place of Parvinder Awana. His knack of picking wickets has made him a regular in the side and he is doing full justice to the spot.
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