Although the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) come into the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2020) as definite underdogs, the team does have a balance that hasn't been seen yet.
Virat Kohli's men are engaged in intense training sessions in the UAE as they attempt to secure a much-awaited IPL title. RCB will play their first game against the Sunrisers Hyderabad on the 3rd day of IPL 2020 action (21st September).
Ahead of the tournament, we attempt to predict RCB's playing XI.
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RCB's predicted playing XI for IPL 2020
Note: All players from England and Australia have been assumed to be available, with no official word yet regarding their participation in the first few games of IPL 2020.
Openers: Aaron Finch, Devdutt Padikkal
Aaron Finch doesn't have a great IPL record and in his last season in 2018, he managed only 134 runs in 10 games for Ravichandran Ashwin's Kings XI Punjab (KXIP). Although he was used down the order for KXIP, he is expected to bat at the opening slot where he is most dangerous in IPL 2020.
The Australian white-ball captain seems to be in good nick in the ongoing T20I series against England, and if he gets RCB off to good starts in IPL 2020, that will take a lot of the pressure off Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers.
Devdutt Padikkal would be the ideal candidate to partner him at the top of the order. The highly-rated Karnataka youngster has been praised by head coach Simon Katich, who said that he has done everything possible to make his IPL debut.
Padikkal's inclusion would mean that Parthiv Patel is demoted to the bench, which is a brave call to say the least. But the 20-year-old has been in cracking form in domestic cricket, and his talent simply cannot be ignored.