A clash between two of the in-form teams going through in this IPL was expected to be a promising one and it was, as we witnessed many excellent performances. But at last it was the Royal Challengers Bengaluru who emerged victorious in this clash of the heavyweights. Now let us look through what both the teams had to take from this match.
Result: Royal Challengers Bengaluru beat Rajasthan Royals by 8 wickets. Scorecard.
Talking Points from the match
RR batsmen failing to capitalise in the powerplay
Jos Butler and Steve Smith got off to a great start scoring at a run rate of nearly 10 per over When things were going in RR’s favor, RCB pulled it back by pegging the wickets of Steve Smith, Jos Butler and Sanju Samson in back to back overs. RR was reduced from 27/0 to 31/3 with all their main batsmen back in the pavilion. This was pretty much the start that RCB needed to win the match. As for RR, the top order choked like in the previous match against Kolkata Knight Riders.
Lomror solving the middle order woes for the Rajasthan Royals
With the score on 31/3, RR needed a batsman to step up to help them post a competitive total. The run rate too became less as the game progressed on with Uthappa consuming a lot of balls. Lomror knew that he had to look for some boundaries to ensure their run rate is in check. He stepped up against the RCB bowling lineup and took the aerial route whenever needed. And when Uthappa got out, the score was 70/4 in 10.1 overs. Another wicket here would expose the lower-order batsmen in just the halfway stage of the inning. Now, he went for the singles and doubles to get them over the 100 run mark. Alas, he got out to Chahal with three short of what could’ve been an amazing half-century.
Chahal spins the web for RCB
Chahal was brought into the powerplay by Kohli to scalp the wicket of the in-form Samson. Chahal already had a great track record against him, dismissing him a couple of times. Samson chipped the ball into Chahal’s hands and he caught it!!! But wait… there was a doubt whether it was a clean catch or not. But the third umpire thought it was out. There were questions though whether the ball bounced or not but anyways Chahal had removed RR’s dangerman, Sanju Samson for a paltry score. And when he was brought into the attack with RR stitching a slow and steady partnership, Chahal removed Robbie Uthappa for just 17. And in the 17th over when Lomror was set to make a half century, Chahal once again removed him to restrict the damage. It was a magnificent spell of bowling conceding only 24 runs in 4 overs and scalping 3 important wickets.
RR’s big hitters seal the score over 150
RR’s big hitters, Tewatia and Archer once again impressed with their cameos at the fag end of the innings. With the run rate just above 6, RR needed the big hitters’ firepower to cross the 150 run barrier. Once Lomror got out, these two caressed the bowlers to the cleaners. RCB yet another time lacked steam at the death overs, conceding 49. Tewatia scored a quickfire 24 while Archer made a great cameo of 16 off 10 balls to propel the Royals to 154/6.
Devdutt Padikkal had two fifties in three outings and yet another time he showed his consistency with another half-century. This time instead of playing a second fiddle, Padikkal went to the fifth gear right from ball 1. He got RCB off to a great start in the powerplay and once Finch got out to Gopal, Padikkal knew he had to minimize the risks because another wicket could prove to be extremely costly. He batted sensibly and reached a great half-century. And when a bad ball was thrown at him, he was happy enough to hit it to the fence. After a phenomenal 62 off 45 balls, Padikkal got out to Archer trying to heave it for a boundary. RCB would be relieved that their openers’ dilemma is wholly solved.
Back- in form Kohli
18 runs in 3 matches for Kohli, you got to be kidding, right? Everyone thought Kohli was completely out of form after miserably failing in all the matches. The situation of 25/1 in a run chase of 155 was completely suited for Kohli. Rajasthan attacked him at the start of the innings with his nemesis, Shreyas Gopal, and the speedster Jofra Archer. As the innings gradually progressed, Kohli played his natural game of rotating the strike continuously. He cautiously played a run a ball 28 to find his feet and once he got to 30, Kohli unleashed his A-game to the Royals bowlers. The stage was set for him when he hit identical shots for a four and a six over covers against the young Riyan Parag. He paved the way through a half-century and then attacked the RR bowlers to keep the run rate in check. A blistering 72 off 53 balls ensured that the Royal Challengers Bengaluru won and reached the top of the table.
Questions to be answered:
- Will Rajasthan stick to the old gun, Uthappa or will they replace him with Uthappa?
- With Ben Stokes arriving, will RR get their momentum going after losing two consecutive matches?
- With Chahal and Sundar bowling brilliantly for the RCB, will they consider playing Chris Morris over Adam Zampa?
It was indeed a great win for the RCB which was a result of some excellent teamwork. Meanwhile, Rajasthan has to address a lot of issues in the middle order as well as the lack of wickets in the last two matches. Next, RCB will face the table toppers, Delhi Capitals while the Rajasthan Royals will face the Mumbai Indians.
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