Royal Challengers of Bangalore have always been a dangerous batting side but not the same while bowling. This IPL has seen only 2 matches out of the 16 matches played so far won defending a total. Surprisingly, on both the occasions, RCB was the winning team. Strange, but yes they bucked the trend once again.
Rising Pune Supergiants under the proven leadership of MS Dhoni is a very strong team, going by the names but apart from their 1st match, they have failed to win any till now. Dhoni won the toss on a good batting wicket and as the trend is, decided to bowl first. Chase is the mantra this IPL so far.
They would have thought that the match was in favor of them until RCB decided to outsmart them.
Kohli opened the batting with KL Rahul as Gayle is still not back from West Indies.Kohli is indifferent to everything now a days. He just turns up on the field and scores per his will. Tonight was no different he started as his usual self while Rahul struggled at the other end.
Rahul’s stay ended in the 4th over to the bowling of Thisara Perera to a rising applause as AB was the new man in.
As has been a script for RCB for long, Kohli and Devilliers came together again to stitch yet another gigantic partnership. They whacked all the bowlers at each and every corner of the ground.
Kohli was more sober today as he scored an 80 from 63 deliveries but AB was on a roll again as he smashed a belligerent 83 off just 46 balls to give the team the much needed impetus.
Their partnership was worth 155 runs in just about 15 overs as they got out to consecutive balls in the last over of the innings. RCB scored a mammoth 185 for 3. A very good score under any circumstances, but with the batting prowess of RPS, no score can be considered safe.
With the recent history of sides chasing winning, RPS would have been pretty confident as they started the chase.
RPS started their innings with Rahane and Du Plessis. And then what happened was nothing less than a catastrophe. Du Plessis fell in the 2nd over for just 2 and the next man Kevin Pieterson pulled his calf on the very first delivery he faced. KP was retired hurt to be out of the match and as known later, out of IPL 2016 as well. Mr. Dependable Steve Smith walked in next just to go back off his 3rd ball.
RPS was suddenly 18 for 2 on the scorecard and 18 for 3 effectively with KP out of contention.
All this happened in just 2.3 overs of the pune innings. Suddenly the match looked finished for them. Rahane and skipper Dhoni rebuilt the innings from scratch to add 91 for the 3rd wicket before Rahane perished in the 15th over for a well made 60 off 46 balls.
Dhoni was again in a well known situation for him, where he needed to finish off big but this time he failed.
He fell for a tad slow 41 off 38 balls, leaving too much for the other batsman. Thisara Perera and Rajat Bhatia tried their bit with attacking cameos but still fell short by 13 runs. The asking rate got too big for them. Perera smashed 34 off just 13 balls while Bhatia scored 21 off 11.
RCB came off a losing streak of sorts and Pune went deep into it. RCB would be quite pleased with the fact that their bowling performed when needed. Pune on the other hand would have to bounce back to still be in contention. With KP out, their batting would hamper but with MS Dhoni, you never know.