Delhi Capitals (DC) take on the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in Match 22 of the IPL 2021 season at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Tuesday. Both teams have started the tournament well and have lost just one out of their first five games.
DC beat Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in a thrilling Super Over and will be high on confidence after such a close win. RCB, on the other hand, were handed a 69-run mauling by the Chennai Super Kings, thanks to an all-round masterclass from 'Sir' Ravindra Jadeja.
DC vs RCB: 3 batsmen to watch out for
Although the surface in Ahmedabad is better than that in Chennai, the pitch has tended to slow down a bit as the game has progressed. With large boundaries, runs on the board will again be a crucial factor for both RCB and DC to win the game.
On that note, let's have a look at 3 batsmen who can have a memorable outing in the RCB vs DC encounter.
#3 Glenn Maxwell
Glenn Maxwell had a rare failure in the last game in what has been a terrific season for him so far. The Australian all-rounder had become a laughing stock last year when he played for Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) and couldn't hit a six in all the 13 games that he played.
Having been released back into the auction, Maxwell yet again attracted big bucks, this time from RCB who snapped him up for INR 14.25 crore. Coming into IPL 2021, many believed this was an outrageous fee for someone who was highly inconsistent.
But the 32-year-old has been given the freedom at RCB to bat ahead of AB de Villiers and express himself. With two half-centuries already, Maxwell is RCB's highest run-scorer so far this season.
He is one of the main reasons why RCB have had the best start to their IPL season ever, winning their first four games in a row. The jolt in the last game would surely have made RCB realize that a lot depends on how the big guns like Kohli, Maxwell and De Villiers play.
If Maxwell gets into his groove, there's no boundary in the world that is big enough for him. It will be interesting to see whether he delivers yet another blistering knock against his former employers.
#2 Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan's resurgence as a T20 opener ever since he has been with the Delhi Capitals has been monumental. Many had started writing off the 35-year-old as someone who was not good enough for the shortest format and believed India needed to blood young openers into their T20 plans.
Dhawan soon became India's third-choice opener in T20Is behind Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul. However, the southpaw has redeemed himself in fine fashion by having back-to-back successful IPL seasons.
Having finished as the second-highest run-scorer last season with 618 runs, Dhawan has followed it up with a dream start to the IPL 2021, scoring 259 runs from five games so far. He has been praised for his high strike-rate of 142.30, something which Rahul has struggled to achieve.
With DC's talisman Shreyas Iyer out for the entire season, Dhawan's experience at the top of the order will be key for DC this year. He certainly has the capability to dominate the RCB bowling attack and score big.
The updated IPL orange cap table is available here.
#1 Virat Kohli
As soon as Virat Kohli revealed that he would open the batting for RCB in the IPL 2021 season, the fans started buzzing. This was because he had a fantastic season at the top of the order in 2016 where he scored a ridiculous 973 runs with four centuries.
However, this season has been a mixed bag for the RCB skipper with the bat, scoring just 151 runs so far from 5 games. Nevertheless, he has some great memories of this ground and that would certainly give him a boost ahead of the encounter against DC.
The recently-concluded five-match T20I series between India and England was played in Ahmedabad and Kohli ended up as the player of the series. He scored 231 runs in five games at a stupendous average of 114.50 with three half-centuries to his name.
More often than not, Kohli has been the master of converting starts into big scores and could make DC pay if they fail to get him out early.