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Match 35 of Pepsi IPL 2014 will see the Royal Challengers Bangalore taking on the Rajsthan Royals.
RCB need a win more than their opponents, for they have steadily slipped down the standings, and now find themselves in the bottom half of the table. In their most recent outing, they had no answers to Glenn Maxwell and co. With just three wins under the belt, they are now faced with a situation where they need to win at least five of their remaining six matches to even stay in contention for a Playoffs spot.
Rajasthan Royals will consider their 32-run defeat to Sunrisers Hydeabad an aberration. Despite not boasting too many superstars in their ranks, RR have almost always punched above their weight. With five wins from eight matches, they are steadily closing in on a Playoff spot; and a win in this contest will take them a step closer.
Sunday, May 11, 2014, 8 pm IST Where
M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru The Protagonists
Royal Challengers Bangalore have to address their batting woes. In three of their last four matches, RCB have lost two of their top three batsmen to single-digit scores and have not had any kind of momentum in their innings. With the competition for Playoffs spots getting intense, it is about time the likes of Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli – who are yet to score a half-century this season – start getting the big runs under their belt. There is no doubt that Gayle and Kohli are under pressure. But both players need to believe that a good knock is just around the corner.
The Rajasthan Royals would have hopefully learnt their lessons after the debacle that was their previous outing. And the two players who will possibly assume more responsibility from hereon will be skipper Shane Watson and opener Ajinkya Rahane.
On the bowling front, the battle between the two leg-spinners promises a good contest. 23-year-old Yuzvendra Chahal will be pitted against 42-year-old Pravin Tambe. Both bowlers operate with different philosophies, yet have picked up some very important wickets and have held their own in this batsman-friendly format.
Notes from Previous match
Royal Challengers Bangalore v Kings XI Punjab: Royal Challengers Bangalore will be worried about the lack of discipline from their bowlers. In two consecutive matches, the bowlers have erred with their lines and have bowled plenty of wides and no-balls. Not only has the team paid the one-run penalty every time a bowler has bowled a wide or a no-ball, but the extra delivery in the over has gone for runs too. And that has hurt the team. RCB need better discipline on the field too; they cannot afford to leak runs. On the batting front, they need a platform from the top order.
Rajasthan Royals v Sunrisers Hyderabad: The Rajasthan Royals possibly needed one partnership of about 50 runs to beat the Sunrisers Hyderabad, who were only defending 134. Yet, the best RR managed was a partnership of 37 runs – and that in itself tells the story. The positives for RR were that the bowlers did very well in not allowing their opponents to construct a partnership. The bowlers deserve a pat on the backs for the manner in which they pulled back SRH after they got off to a rollicking start.
Rajasthan Royals’ wins in their last two matches against the Royal Challengers Bangalore means the head to head between the two teams reads 6-6 from 12 matches. The numbers are no different in contests between the two teams in Bengaluru; they’ve met on four occasions and have won two matches apiece.
Both RCB and RR prefer chasing. RCB has a 56 percent success record in run-chases, while RR have a 63.5 percent success record while batting second.
Both teams will be seen in action next on May 13. Rajasthan Royals take on the Chennai Super Kings in Ranchi at 4 pm, while Royal Challengers Bangalore host the Delhi Daredevils at 8 pm.
Match 34 of Pepsi IPL 2014 will see table-toppers Kings XI Punjab clash with the Kolkata Knight Riders.
KXIP have been on a roll almost right through the season. Barring the defeat at the hands of the Mumbai Indians – which was one of those bad days for the team – KXIP have steamrolled every force that’s stood up against them. They’ve not only won matches, but they’ve won them convincingly too – just like they did in their most recent outing against the Royal Challengers Bangalore in Bengaluru.
KKR, meanwhile, come into this contest on the back of a resounding eight-wicket win over the Delhi Daredevils. Prior to that match, the team had lost four matches on the trot, and was starting to fall behind. But the win against the Delhi Daredevils has meant KKR is one of the teams contesting the mid-table battle.
Sunday, May 11, 2014, 4 pm IST
Barabati Stadium, Cuttack
KXIP have had almost all their batsmen score runs at some point this season. However, the bulk of the runs have come from two men – Glenn Maxwell and David Miller. Maxwell’s 460 runs have come at a strike-rate of 204.44, while Miller’s 284 runs have come at a rate of 168.04. On the bowling front, Sandeep Sharma has been very impressive; the 20-year-old has impressed with his ability to swing the ball both ways and has given KXIP early breakthroughs on many occasions.
Gautam Gambhir and Robin Uthappa have done well as a pair. In the last two innings they have opened, they have stitched together partnerships of 121 and 106. With so much focus on the men in form, they will be expected to come good yet again. The battle between the wily Sunil Narine and the two M’s in the KXIP line-up promises to make for riveting viewing.
Notes from Previous match
Kings XI Punjab v Royal Challengers Bangalore: This was yet another clinical performance from KXIP. The openers set up the platform, the middle order fired and the bowlers were relentless against a loaded RCB line-up. The biggest gain for KXIP will be the performance of debutant Shivam Sharma; playing his first ever competitive match, the 20-year-old showed no signs of nerves and did a very good job with his off-spin.
Kolkata Knight Riders v Delhi Daredevils: Robin Uthappa and Gautam Gambhir have now been involved in partnerships of 121 and 106 in the last two matches and KKR will be glad that their openers have been giving them solid starts. KKR will also be glad that their batsmen were very smart in not allowing the pressure to build; there were only 25 dot balls in their successful chase of 161. As far as the bowlers are concerned, KKR will take heart that they kept going at the opposition right from the word go (bowling 24 dot balls in the powerplay), struck at regular intervals and did not allow the opposition to build partnerships.
It is six matches apiece in contests between the Kings XI Punjab and the Kolkata Knight Riders. In the most recent meeting between these two teams – in Abu Dhabi on April 26 – KKR restricted KXIP to 132 for nine but still fell short of the target by 23 runs.
Glenn Maxwell and David Miller have together consumed 41.8 percent of the balls faced by Kings XI Punjab so far this season, but have contributed 54.4 percent of the runs scored.
An incredible 85 percent of Sandeep Sharma’s 13 wickets this season have been of top-order batsmen. He has dismissed seven openers and has picked up the wicket of the one-drop batsman on four occasions.
Kings XI Punjab will be seen in action next in Hyderabad when they take on Sunrisers Hyderabad on May 14. The Kolkata Knight Riders, meanwhile, stay back in Cuttack to take on the Mumbai Indians on May 14.