The Royal Challengers Bangalore have continued what has been a different start to the IPL for the team compared to recent years. Virat Kohli’s men moved on to their third victory in four games, and in the process, ascended to the top of the IPL 2020 points table.
Set a target of 155 by the Rajasthan Royals, RCB started just as well as they possibly could have. Devdutt Padikkal continued his rich vein of form right from the word go. The 20-year-old flicked Royals’ pacer Jaydev Unadkat for a six off the second ball of his innings, announcing his intent right away.
Opener Aaron Finch wouldn’t stick around for much longer, however. Going for the paddle sweep, the Australian skipper was done in by Shreyas Gopal’s googly in the third over, and the Royals’ decision to review would see Finch make his way back to the pavilion.
A seemingly out-of-form Virat Kohli walked out into the middle to join the young Padikkal in what promised to be a fairly achievable run-chase. IPL’s all-time top-scorer came into this game on the back of his worst-ever start to the IPL, and was yet to score a boundary this season. That would all change over the course of the next hour or so.
Young Padikkal and now-senior-statesman Kohli put together a 99-run partnership for the second wicket, as they refused to allow the Royals to wrest their momentum away from RCB.
The Karnataka batsman would eventually depart for a well-made 45-ball 63 when an Archer yorker disturbed the woodwork behind him. This is his highest IPL score yet, and it is the third time that that statistic has changed in the last four games.
RCB fan-favourite AB de Villiers would join Kohli, and help the captain see the job through. Kohli remained unbeaten on 72 off 53 balls, as RCB won by eight wickets, with five balls to spare.
Yuzvendra Chahal spins a web around RR
The Rajasthan Royals started the day positively, with Steve Smith winning the toss and electing to bat. Jos Buttler, Smith’s opening partner, responded to the decision by getting his team off to a bit of a flyer.
The skipper would unfortunately chop one on to the stumps off the bowling of Isuru Udana to set the ball rolling for RCB. Navdeep Saini would dismiss Buttler in the very next over, thanks to a great catch from Devdutt Padikkal at second slip. In-form Sanju Samson was the next to go as Yuzvendra Chahal took a stunning, albeit controversial, return catch.
Robin Uthappa and Mahipal Lomror would steady the ship to an extent, before Uthappa reached out for a Chahal delivery, and skied one to Isuru Udana in the deep. Lomror would go on to score an impressive 39-ball 47 before becoming Chahal’s third victim of the day when he holed out to a waiting Devdutt Padikkal down at long-off.
Some fireworks from Rahul Tewatia and Jofra Archer at the fag end of the innings saw them add 40 runs for the seventh wicket off just 21 balls. The big-hitting from these two ensured that the Royals got to 154 for six in their 20 overs, and that the bowlers had a reasonable score to defend against RCB's batsmen.
IPL 2020: RCB v RR, Who won Man of the Match yesterday?
There were quite a few choices for Man of the Match from RCB’s point of view. Opener Devdutt Padikkal made sure that RCB got off to a great start, and there were no stumbles along the way.
Skipper Virat Kohli marked his return to form with a well-made half-century. He top-scored for the team with an unbeaten 72, reiterating his ‘Master of the run-chase’ moniker.
Yuzvendra Chahal, however, would be named the Man of the Match for a masterful spell of spin-bowling, picking up three wickets for 24 runs in his four overs.
Having sent the dangerous Sanju Samson packing with the first ball of his spell, the wily leg-spinner would add Uthappa and RR top-scorer Mahipal Lomror to his list of victims as well for his second Man of the Match award at IPL 2020.Published 03 Oct 2020, 20:27 IST