This isn't a surprise by any means, as RCB are one of the most popular franchises in the IPL and boast of a vast, loyal fan-base. But the main reason behind the spotlight being on Virat Kohli and his men is their activity in the IPL 2021 player auction.
RCB shelled out exorbitant amounts to acquire the services of Kyle Jamieson and Glenn Maxwell, while also making it a point to recruit a number of young Indian talents. The performances of these players will be keenly tracked in IPL 2021.
RCB have never won an IPL title, and this drought could be set to continue this year. Here are 3 reasons why RCB won't win IPL 2021.
#3 RCB have a nightmarish track record in the IPL
RCB have suffered losses after losses in the IPL, including three heartbreaking ones in the final. They simply can't seem to get it right, and having nothing to show for in their trophy cabinet despite making a plethora of personnel and tactical changes over the years.
While this is an abstract reason when compared to the other two on this list, RCB's track record is certainly against them in IPL 2021. They've been unable to get it done despite being in numerous dominant positions, and this tradition of losing will not help their confidence this year.
In Virat Kohli, RCB have a captain who has divided opinion in the recent past. While his captaincy does seem to be on the ascendancy, he has copped a myriad of criticism for making repeated tactical and selection errors over the years, especially in the IPL. Another dreadful start to a season could throw Kohli and RCB into disarray.
RCB's history in the IPL won't help them one bit in IPL 2021. To be fair to them, though, this reason will be used against them until they somehow manage to break their hoodoo.
#2 RCB's middle order is weak
With Kohli having announced that he'll open the batting, RCB's middle order looks mightily thin on paper.
AB de Villiers is slated to come in at No. 3, leaving Glenn Maxwell, Mohammed Azharuddeen, Dan Christian and Washington Sundar to complete the rest of the batting order.
But Maxwell is on the back of his worst-ever IPL season, and simply cannot seem to perform in the league. Even if he fires, the Aussie batting at No. 4 will put a lot of pressure on the remaining batsmen, especially in the event of the side losing an early wicket or two.
Azharuddeen batted in the middle order during the Vijay Hazare Trophy, but his ideal position in T20 cricket is as an opener. It remains to be seen if he can adjust to the demands of his new role, despite being inexperienced and young.
While Christian seems to be a decent pick at No. 6, he hasn't played in the IPL for a very long time. And Sundar's batting, while tailormade for Test cricket, hasn't made its presence felt in the shortest format yet.
RCB's middle order is far from solid on paper, and could cost the team once again in IPL 2021.
#1 RCB's death-bowling woes are set to continue
The acquisition of Kyle Jamieson seemed to have, on paper at least, alleviated RCB's death-bowling concerns. But the Kiwi quick leaked runs at an alarming economy rate in the recent T20I series against New Zealand, even being dropped from the team for the final match of the series and not taking part in the succeeding series against Bangladesh.
Jamieson doesn't seem to be a finished article in the 20-over format. Although he's a generational talent, the 26-year-old hasn't shown the ability to hit the yorker consistently and doesn't have a bagful of variations up his sleeve like the other good IPL death bowlers.
Navdeep Saini wasn't among the better RCB players in IPL 2020 and hasn't played a lot of cricket for India despite being in the squads of all three formats, while Mohammed Siraj's skills are at their peak with the new ball.
Kane Richardson, COVID-positive Daniel Sams and Harshal Patel - apart from Dan Christian - are the other pace options at RCB's disposal. But none of these players can be relied upon to perform consistently at the death.
RCB's death bowling could cost them in yet another IPL season.