The battle for a playoff place is really heating up. Barring Mumbai Indians rest of the three spots are still up for grabs as Shreyas Iyer’s Delhi Capitals face off against Virat Kohli’s Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Dream11 IPL at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Monday.
Iyer won the toss and invited RCB to take first strike. Despite Devdutt Padikkal’s yet another half-century, RCB managed to post a modest total of 152 for 7 on the board.
In-form Padikkal hammered 50 runs off 41 balls studded with 5 fours. Josh Philippe (12) was the first to get departed as he sliced a slower one from Kagiso Rabada and it flew to Prithvi Shaw.
The tall opener Padikkal, who is one of the top finds of the tournament, was then involved in a 57-run stand with skipper Virat Kolhi, who contributed 29. Kohli was dismissed by Ravichandran Ashwin with Marcus Stoinis taking an excellent catch in the deep.
Anrich Nortje gave RCB two blows in the same over by sending out Padikkal and Chris Morris for a duck. He finished with a brilliant figures of 3 for 33.
AB de Villiers displayed a typical busy innings with a quick-fire 35 before he got run out. Tailender Isuru Udana was also run out as RCB could only muster 6 runs in the last over of the innings. Shivam Dube played a cameo of 17 runs but became second victim of Rabada.
DC made three changes for the crucial encounter. They brought in Ajinkya Rahane, Daniel Sams and Axar Patel for Praveen Dubey, out of form Shimron Hetmyer and Harshal Patel.
RCB replaced injured Navdeep Saini with Shahbaz Ahmed and also got in Shivam Dube for Gurkeerat Mann.
With a target on one playoff spot, DC and RCB are locking horns in the 55th game of the IPL. Both the teams started off very well to strengthen their playoff prospects but Delhi’s four and RCB’s three consecutive losses now have disturbed their calculations.
Royal Challengers Bangalore 152 for 7 in 20 overs (Devdutt Padikkal 50, AB de Villiers 35, Virat Kohli 29, Shivam Dube 17, Josh Philippe 12; Anrich Nortje 3-33, Kagiso Rabada 2-30, Ravichandran Ashwin 1-18) vs Delhi Capitals.