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IPL 2019, RR vs RCB: Key battles to watch out for

ANALYST
Feature
864   //    02 Apr 2019, 11:38 IST

The RR vs RCB rivalry resumes as the two teams face each other in a bottom of the points table clash. In 2018, RR triumphed on both occasions that they met RCB, eventually sending the Bangalore-based franchise out of the playoff race.

RCB have had a disappointing start to IPL 2019 (picture courtesy: BCCI/iplt20.com)
RCB have had a disappointing start to IPL 2019 (picture courtesy: BCCI/iplt20.com)

Both the franchises have big names but they have failed to fire collectively as a team. They are languishing at the bottom of the table, with Rajasthan ahead of Bangalore on NRR. Another loss, and it will be an uphill journey to the playoffs.

RR have been in a good position in almost all of their defeats whereas RCB seem to be clueless right now, as both their batting and bowling outfits have failed to impress.

"We win as a team and we lose as a team. If we win the smaller moments in T20s we will do well," RR captain Ajinkya Rahane said after the loss against CSK.

Let's have a quick look at the key battles to look forward to today:

1. Virat Kohli vs Ben Stokes

It was a see-saw battle when the duo faced each other in England last year
It was a see-saw battle when the duo faced each other in England last year

Kohli and Stokes have a rich history between themselves that includes animated send-offs and having a go at each other almost every time they have played. Stokes has got the better of Kohli 6 times in the international arena and would be raring to go against the RCB skipper.

Kohli is yet to score a fifty in IPL 2019 and would be hungry for some big runs. The skipper's batting position has been inconsistent, and when asked about it, this is what he said:

"I have done well opening the batting but myself at 3 brings that balance in the side, given that I can bat with AB and put the opposition under pressure."

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2. Jos Buttler vs Yuzvendra Chahal

Buttler is yet to find form after the 'mankad' controversy (picture courtesy: BCCI/iplt20.com)
Buttler is yet to find form after the 'mankad' controversy (picture courtesy: BCCI/iplt20.com)

Buttler's dream run started at IPL last year when he scored five consecutive fifties to guide Rajasthan Royals to the playoffs. While his scoring rate against the pacers is exceptional, he has struggled a bit against spin.

In the last edition of the IPL, the Englishman succumbed to spin 6 times out of 10.

Yuzvendra Chahal meanwhile has taken six wickets in three matches; he returned with figures of 4-38 against Mumbai Indians. The RCB skipper would fancy giving Chahal an over or two in the powerplay against Buttler.



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