New Delhi: In the first match of the doubleheader on Sunday, it will be Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) who will be locking horns with visitors Rajasthan Royals (RR) at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
After a great outing against Kings XI Punjab in the last encounter, RCB will have their tails up and look to continue their winning momentum. On the other hand, the Royals will also be buoyed by their victory over Delhi Daredevils.
Both the sides have pocketed a win at their home venues and are placed at fifth and seventh position respectively in the points table.
Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers will be at the centre of RCB’s batting plans. The RCB skipper has had two starts this season but has failed to convert it to a big score; he will be itching to get a big one in this one, the added motivation being the opportunity to set right his poor record against the Rajasthan Royals.
De Villiers scored a match-winning half-century in the previous match. while RR beat Delhi Daredevils (DD) by 10 runs in a rain-hit match at Sawai Mansingh Stadium.
Umesh Yadav, who struck thrice in an over in the previous match, has bowled with plenty of fire. Royal Challengers Bangalore will play their third match in five days when they visit the Mumbai Indians on 17 April. While AB de Villiers averages 48.50 against the Rajasthan Royals, Virat Kohli averages 19.85 – his lowest against any of the IPL teams.
Rajasthan Royals lost their opener against Sunrisers Hyderabad but came back strongly in the rain-affected contest against the Delhi Daredevils.
The key men who would have to do the bulk of the work to aid the Royals to that score will be Samson, Ben Stokes, Rahane and Jos Buttler, who will be banked upon to give the late impetus to the side.
Ben Stokes, Jaydev Unadkat and D’Arcy Short are yet to make a significant contribution; the RR management will be hoping they can come good in this match. Jos Buttler made a quickfire 29 against DD. RR will expect the three overseas batsmen to contribute in excess of 100 runs.
Ben Stokes has dismissed Virat Kohli on 5 occasions so far in his career including once in IPL 2017. Sanju Samson looked good with the bat in both matches and the Ajinkya Rahane-led side will hope for him to fire again.
Team Head to Head
Overall: Matches – 16, RCB won – 8, RR won – 7, No Result – 1
At the M Chinnaswamy Stadium: Matches – 6, RCB won – 2, RR won – 3, No Result – 1
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Virat Kohli (c), AB de Villiers, Sarfaraz Khan, Chris Woakes, Yuzvendra Singh Chahal, Umesh Yadav, Brendon McCullum, Washington Sundar, Navdeep Saini, Quinton de Kock, Mohammed Siraj, Colin de Grandhomme, Corey Anderson, M Ashwin, Parthiv Patel, Moeen Ali, Mandeep Singh, Manan Vohra, Pawan Negi, Tim Southee, Kulwant Khejroliya, Aniket Choudhary, Pavan Deshpande, Anirudha Joshi.
Rajasthan Royals: Ajinkya Rahane (C ), Ankit Sharma, Sanju Samson, Ben Stokes, Dhawal Kulkarni, Jofra Archer, D’Arcy Short, Dushmantha Chameera, Stuart Binny, Shreyas Gopal, S Midhun, Jaydev Unadkat, Ben Laughlin, Prashant Chopra, Krishnappa Gowtham, Mahipal Lomror, Jatin Saxena, Anureet Singh, Aryaman Birla, Jos Buttler, Heinrich Klaasen, Zahir Khan and Rahul Tripathi.