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Arun Gopalakrishnan in Mumbai 16 May 2012 - 11:46pm IST

Preview: Match 67 – DD v RCB

Can RCB keep their hopes alive by stunning table-toppers DD?

What

Table-toppers Delhi Daredevils take on Royal Challengers Bangalore in Match 67 of DLF IPL 2012.

For the Delhi Daredevils, this match presents the opportunity to build momentum heading into the playoffs and a chance to win more points; they’ll be looking to finish among the top two teams in the standings. Royal Challengers Bangalore, meanwhile, need to win here to progress to the playoffs; a slip-up here would render their last league fixture, against the Deccan Chargers, meaningless.

Given how much rides on this game for RCB, they will need to lift themselves from the drubbing they received at the hands of Ambati Rayudu and Kieron Pollard in their last match and put up their best bowling performance of the tournament.

When

Thursday, May 17, 2012, 08:00 p.m.


Where


Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium, Delhi


The Protagonists


Given the reputations they carry, Virender Sehwag and David Warner will have to lead Delhi Daredevils’ batting charge. This has been Sehwag’s most successful IPL season ever. With 484 runs, five half-centuries on the trot and three Man-of-the-Match awards, Sehwag has been DD’s best player by a distance.

Warner has had two quiet outings since scoring that century against the Deccan Chargers. Expect him to turn on the heat.

In the RCB line-up, look no further than Chris Gayle. The Jamaican has taken the tournament by storm; despite missing one match, he is the team’s leading run-getter with 578 runs. And unlike in the previous season, he has shown a lot of application and the intention to stay put for longer periods of time.

Keep an eye on RCB’s bowling line-up too. Apart from Muttiah Muralitharan, who has bowled tidily right through the tournament, almost all the other bowlers have come in for stick regularly. For RCB to qualify for the playoffs and progress to the title clash, the bowlers too need to come to the party.

Previous Meetings

The head-to-head comparison between the Delhi Daredevils and Royal Challengers Bangalore stands at five-three in favour of DD.

In the most recent meeting between these two teams – played at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru earlier this season – hosts RCB posted 157 for eight and then restricted their opponents to 137 for seven to win by 20 runs.

Trivia


• Royal Challengers Bangalore have played better on the road as compared to at home. They’ve won four of their six away matches, but managed to win just three of their eight home fixtures.

• Royal Challengers Bangalore and Delhi Daredevils have the two best scoring rates in IPL 2012. While RCB’s overall scoring rate this season is 8.33, Delhi Daredevils are slightly behind with 8.25 runs per over.

What next?

On May 19, Delhi Daredevils will be seen in action at Dharamsala when they take on Kings XI Punjab in the last league fixture for both teams. Royal Challengers Bangalore, meanwhile, will travel to Hyderabad on May 20 for their last league game, against the Deccan Chargers.

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