We look at the probable playing XI of RCB against RR for the virtual quarter-final match at Jaipur. Riding on a hat-trick of victories, Royal Challengers Bangalore have finally regained their lost momentum. They have won their last 3 matches against Delhi Daredevils, Kings XI Punjab and Sunrisers Hyderabad and would be very difficult to stop.
The Virat Kohli led RCB will be touring to Rajasthan’s home ground at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur. It is a must-win match for RCB if they would want to make it to the next round. On the other hand, RR would have to win the match by a huge, huge margin if they even have to harbour a flicker of hope.
Tim Southee, who was censured by the match referee in the last game for having a go at the Umpire, would be available for this game.
The left-hander has fared quite decently, providing his team with some quick-fire starts in the last few matches, thereby laying a solid foundation for the middle-order batsmen. With an impressive strike rate of 141.66 and an unbeaten 40-run knock in the match against KXIP, it is likely that Parthiv would retain his spot in the team.
Arguably the best batsman in the world across all three formats at the moment, and undoubtedly the best for RCB this season, Virat Kohli would walk into any team without any difficulty. His form is good and the skipper would hold the key on the big ground in Jaipur where running between the wickets would be crucial.
Arriving at Jaipur and look at how @mandeeps12 looks like he’s having a whale of a time listening to @yuzi_chahal and Gary’s intense discussion!
Try making sense of what Yuzi said.#PlayBold #RRvRCB #RCB pic.twitter.com/KJau7QmUqA
— Royal Challengers (@RCBTweets) May 19, 2018
AB de Villiers
The South African right-handed batsman is RCB’s most crucial player in the middle order. AB walked in one down in the last match and scored 60 odd. He would want to continue from where he left against SRH. ABD smashed the Hydeabad bowlers all around the park and along with Moeen Ali helped his side to put on a big score.
After impressing everybody with his performances for his national side England, Moeen Ali was picked up by the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the auctions, but unfortunately, he didn’t find a spot in the playing XI for the first 9 matches. However, Ali has now started to prove his worth to the team. He has stepped up his game with the bat and his economical off-breaks in the middle overs have been significant for his team.
Mandeep has been RCB’s main finisher this season. After MS Dhoni, Mandeep Singh has had the most runs at the death overs this season and more often than not has helped RCB to finish strong. The right-hander from Punjab will bat at the number 5 position against RR.
LOWER MIDDLE ORDER:
Colin De Grandhomme
It was CDG’s explosive 40 that took RCB beyond 200 in the last match. The Kiwi all-rounder has proved to be worthy ever since he has stepped into the team. He has played some important cameos with the bat towards the end of the innings, and also has been very economical with the bowl. Plus, taking into consideration his fielding abilities, he for sure shall retain his spot in the team.
Sarfaraz Khan finally came good in the last game, scoring 22 off 8 balls. Also, given that RCB retained Sarfaraz, they may be tempted to play him. The pocket-rocket can be used as a floater as he can bat at the top of the order as well as in the middle order.
Chahal hasn’t performed up to our expectations this season. He has managed to take just 12 wickets in 13 matches so far. However, his performances in the previous matches have shown some signs of a comeback. Chahal would like to take some confidence from the last three matches and would be keen on delivering in the upcoming fixture.
— Royal Challengers (@RCBTweets) May 19, 2018
Tim Southee was censured for a Level 1 offence under Article 2.1.8 of the IPL Code of Conduct for Players and Team Officials in the last game against SRH but would still find a place in the side. Southee hurled scurrilous words towards the umpire after being denied a claimed catch. However, the Kiwi conceded to the offence and accepted the sanction. As a result, he was let off with a fine.
It were Southee’s tram line yorkers in the last game that crushed the SRH chase. Having been able to execute the yorkers to perfection at the death, Southee has always been the most reliable death bowling option for Virat Kohli. The Kiwi has also been remarkable in the field having taken some brilliant catches in the deep. RCB would hope that Southee continues his good form for the remainder of the tournament.
The right-arm speedster from Vidarbha has been RCB’s pick of the bowlers this year. Umesh has taken 17 wickets in 13 matches and is ranked number 3 on the Purple Cap list as well. There aren’t a lot of questions regarding his spot in the team; indeed, he will be looking to lead the bowling attack against SRH.
As the tournament has gone along, Mohammed Siraj has improved with each passing game. After a poor start to the season, Siraj has bowled very well lately. He has 10 wickets to his name, including a 3-fer against the Sunrisers Hyderabad. He will share the ball along with Tim Southee at the death for RCB and would try to restrict the opposition at the lowest possible total.