Sport

Upbeat Royal Challengers have the edge over the Royals

Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) holds the edge over Rajasthan Royals in the IPL Qualifier 2 at the Narendra Modi Stadium here on Friday.

RCB is flying high, after an inspirational 14-run win over Lucknow Super Giants in the Eliminator in Kolkata on Wednesday.

The unheralded Rajat Patidar’s unbeaten knock of 112 shut Lucknow out of the tournament.

Crucial phase

It was a breakthrough performance for Patidar, who will hope to carry this form into Friday’s encounter.

RCB will be mighty pleased to have Patidar come good in the middle overs — a crucial yet often overlooked phase in T20s.

Dinesh Karthik had an indifferent outing with the gloves on Wednesday, but he continues to excel as a finisher.

With Virat Kohli registering scores of 25, 73 and 20 in his last three outings, RCB will believe that he is on the cusp of a big knock.

Rajasthan, keen to bounce back from a seven-wicket loss to Gujarat Titans in the Qualifier 1, faces a stellar RCB bowling attack.

Harshal Patel and Josh Hazlewood are effective in the death overs, while Sri Lankan spinner Wanindu Hasaranga is tough to pick.

Rajasthan will look to maximise run-scoring chances in the PowerPlay, with Mohammed Siraj and Hazlewood often leaking runs.

Opener Jos Buttler and skipper Sanju Samson, both capable of playing rapid, match-winning knocks, are key to Rajasthan’s fortunes.

If RCB can spark a top-order collapse, the Rajasthan ship could sink.

High energy

Despite the home team, Gujarat Titans, not featuring in this game, the massive Narendra Modi Stadium — sans spectator restrictions — is bound to bounce with high energy in the do-or-die encounter.


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Printable version | Jun 25, 2022 2:04:54 am | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/upbeat-royal-challengers-have-the-edge-over-the-royals/article65464934.ece