Royal Challengers Bangalore delivers a complete performance to beat Kolkata Knight Riders in Sharjah on Monday.
Sharjah has seen some high scoring games in IPL 2020. Royal Challengers Bangalore found themselves in a different ground when they batted first against Kolkata Knight Riders at Sharjah Stadium on October 12. The pitch was two-paced and batsmen were finding it difficult to score.
Courtesy of a masterclass from AB de Villiers, RCB managed to post a mammoth total of 194. KKR hardly found momentum in the chase as RCB strangled them with accurate bowling. With a resounding win by 82 runs, RCB is level on points with Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals in the table. Here are some important takeaways from RCB’s latest win in IPL 2020.
AB de Villiers return to form important for RCB
RCB found themselves in a state of bother when Aaron Finch and Virat Kohli struggled to score boundaries in the middle overs. The former threw away his wicket in an attempt to accelerate the innings, while the latter was focusing on scoring runs by singles and doubles.
In came AB de Villiers at number four to provide some sort of purpose to the innings. The South African batsman put shame to other batsmen by scoring 73 runs in 33 balls, hammering the ball across all parts of the park. His innings was eventually the difference between two batsmen. It was a vintage performance from de Villiers. He has scored a couple of big scores this season, but Monday could kickstart his season and provide RCB even more impetus in the batting.
KKR needs to sort the batting order
KKR decided to bolster the batting unit on Monday by bringing in Tom Banton for Sunil Narine. However, this move hardly made a serious impact on the pitch against RCB. Rahul Tripathi shone at the top order in the last few innings, but he was shoehorned lower down the order to accommodate Banton.
Dinesh Karthik decided to come in ahead of Andre Russell when the scoring rate was touching sky. He failed to make an impact despite getting back to his best in the last game. KKR currently has quality batters in the team, but they need to find a way to maximize the potential of these players. Sorting out the batting order will be a step in the right direction for Kolkata based franchise in the upcoming games.
RCB have found the balance in the bowling unit
For years, RCB has struggled while defending totals. They never had a strong bowling unit that would back up the good work done by the batsmen. However, this season story has been completely different.
Chris Morris’s return to fitness has given Kohli a strong bowling option upfront and in the death overs. The South African bowler has been economical in the two games he has played this season. Meanwhile, the spin duo of Washington Sundar and Yuzvendra Chahal is blocking the flow of runs in the middle overs. The performances of these three bowlers have rubbed off the confidence on other bowlers in the team. RCB finally have a bowling unit that can mount a formidable challenge against the best batsmen in the competition.
By Kiran Thakare