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Match 50 of DLF IPL 2012 will see the Royal Challengers Bangalore take on the Deccan Chargers.
While DC lie at the ground floor of the table with just two wins from ten fixtures, RCB are locked in a mid-table scramble. Though the points table indicates that the Chargers have only two wins, it does not reflect the fact that they’ve competed hard and have given several opponents a scare.
RCB have a very formidable side, but they’ve somehow failed to click as a unit. They haven’t tasted success in their last three matches now – their home fixture against CSK was rained out, while they were thrashed by the Kolkata Knight Riders in their away fixture and came second-best in a close match against Kings XI Punjab. When
Sunday, May 6, 2012, 08:00 p.m.
M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bangalore
Batting is, without a doubt, RCB’s strength. In Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers, they have two in-form batsmen. Though Gayle hasn’t been as devastating as he was in IPL 2011, he continues to score runs and is currently his team’s highest run-getter. Unlike before, when he would go after the bowling from the word go, Gayle has shown the inclination to spend time in the middle, apply himself and then go after bowlers. AB de Villiers has singlehandedly won RCB at least a couple of matches this season; but he hasn’t done anything noteworthy in his last two innings, and he will be keen to contribute to his team’s cause.
Cameron White has been exceptional in what has been an ordinary tournament for his team. The Australian has scored three half-centuries this season – two of those in match-winning causes and one, which set up the match for his team, only for the rest of the batting line-up to mess up the run-chase.
Keep an eye out on Dale Steyn too. The South African speedster has bowled some fiery spells this season and has been his team’s best bowler by a mile; it will be interesting to see if he can keep a lid on the stroke-makers in the RCB line-up.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore and the Deccan Chargers have so far met nine times in the IPL – including the final of IPL 2009 – and the latter hold a slight 5-4 edge in head-to-head comparison.
The last time these two teams met was in Hyderabad in IPL 2011 when the Deccan Chargers registered their only home victory of the season. On that occasion, the hosts posted 175 for five batting first and then restricted RCB to 142 for nine to win by 33 runs. Trivia
RCB’s Chris Gayle is the leading six-hitter in the IPL; he’s hit 99 sixes in 36 innings.
Chris Gayle holds the record for scoring the most runs in a calendar year; he scored 1497 runs in 31 Twenty20 matches in 2011.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore have the poorest bowling economy-rate among the nine teams in IPL 2012 – 8.59.
RCB’s next encounter will against the Mumbai Indians on May 9, while the Deccan Chargers will head back home after this fixture and prepare to host the Pune Warriors India on May 8.
The Mumbai Indians and the Chennai Super Kings – two traditional powerhouses of the IPL – will face off against each other in Match 49 of DLF IPL 2012.
Both teams were considered to be among the top contenders to make it to the playoffs, but things haven’t quite gone according to script for them. The Mumbai Indians have won six out of their ten matches; but in four of those six wins, they’ve barely managed to edge past their opponents.
The Chennai Super Kings, on the other hand, are yet to display the form that saw them cruise to the IPL title in 2011. The defending champions have won five of their ten matches and need to start winning consistently if they hope to finish among the top four teams for the fifth season in a row.
Sunday, May 6, 2012, 04:00 p.m.
Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai
For the Mumbai Indians to become a strong force, they need Sachin Tendulkar to start piling on big runs. Five starts in six innings and a highest of 34 only confirm that Tendulkar hasn’t quite converted the starts to big match-winning scores that are expected from him. The Little Master has looked in good form, but needs to anchor the innings at one end – just like he did in IPL 2011.
In the Chennai Super Kings’ line-up, keep an eye on their two in-form players – Faf du Plessis and Suresh Raina. While the former has scored runs almost every time he has walked out to bat, the latter seems to be slowly discovering the form that helped him score over 400 runs in each of the past four seasons.
Lasith Malinga’s four overs and how many runs CSK score off those 24 deliveries could determine which team ends up victorious. Also keep an eye on a mini-battle within the match; the Mumbai Indians skipper Harbhajan Singh struggled to buy wickets in the initial few games, but has discovered his rhythm in the last couple of matches. CSK’s R Ashwin – the man who took his Bhajji’s place in the Indian team – too has been a pale shadow of the bowler who was his team’s top wicket-taker in IPL 2011. Both players will be hoping to impress national selectors, and it will be interesting to see who ends up with more points at the end of the match. Previous Meetings
These two heavyweight teams have so far met on nine occasions, and the Mumbai Indians have a slight edge over the Chennai Super Kings in that they’ve won five of those nine matches.
At home, MI have won three of the four matches against CSK, with the only defeat at home coming in the title clash of IPL 2010.
In the most recent meeting between these two teams – in the opening fixture of IPL 2012 in Chennai – the Mumbai Indians bowled out the hosts for 112 and then cruised to a convincing eight-wicket win.
The Mumbai Indians have the poorest scoring rate of all the teams in IPL 2012 – 7.06.
The Chennai Super Kings are the only team to have not bowled a single maiden over in IPL 2012. What next?
The Mumbai Indians will be back in action on May 9 when they take on the Royal Challengers Bangalore at home. The Chennai Super Kings, meanwhile, enjoy a three-day break before their away fixture against the Rajasthan Royals on May 10.