Sports Cricket 16 Apr 2017 IPL 2017: Royal Chal ...

IPL 2017: Royal Challengers Bangalore aim to get back on track

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | CHITRANGADA D C
Published Apr 16, 2017, 4:26 am IST
Updated Apr 16, 2017, 4:40 am IST
Last year’s runners-up have got off to a miserable start with just one win.
Royal Challengers Bangalore will be desperate to bounce back with a win. (Photo: SHASHIDHAR. B)
 Royal Challengers Bangalore will be desperate to bounce back with a win. (Photo: SHASHIDHAR. B)

Bengaluru: Still devoid of silverware, Royal Challengers Bangalore would have wanted to get going from the word go. But, that has not been the case. Last year’s runners-up have got off to a miserable start with just one win in the ongoing Indian Premier League season. Still, the Bengaluru outfit will be hoping to give the fans something to cheer about when they take on Rising Pune Supergiant at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Sunday.

Moreover, the clash will be a delight for all as rival captains Steve Smith and Virat Kohli face off for the first time after the high-voltage Test series. And as fate would have it, this is where it all began for the duo. Even a different format and different league still promises to serve up an entertaining and spicy encounter, with both teams desperate for a win. Heading into the match, both RCB and RPS have three losses from four matches. And with both boasting of strong batting line-ups, a run-fest is very much on the cards at Chinnaswamy Stadium, which prior to this season has been a high-scoring ground. So far though, RCB have failed to touch the 200-run mark at home and that will be cause for concern.It can safely be said that both Kohli and Smith have failed to find the winning combination in their teams, with individual performances making a mark. But none big enough for a win. As proved over the years the shorter format tends to spring surprises. RCB’s loss at home on Friday to Mumbai Indians will be a tough one to bounce back from. The Mumbai outfit crushed the hosts as they won after being down for 7/4 thanks to Samuel Badree’s debut hat-trick.

 

Mumbai thus went down in the record books to become the first team to win after losing four wickets for less than 10 runs in IPL history, and that without doubt has been a blow to RCB. The Kohli led-team, who have always boasted of the strongest batting line-up and was a bowlers’ nightmare last season, have seriously failed to live up to their strengths, with injuries taking away some of the sheen as well. Pune need the batting to buckle, as only Smith impressing this season.

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