With this performance, there are questions raised about the RCB bowling once again.
The contest between the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and the Delhi Capitals (DC) was a highly anticipated one. With both these teams having done well till this stage of the tournament, there were great expectations from the fans. However, as it turned out, it ended up being one-way traffic. The Capitals didn’t let the Challengers sniff an opportunity at any stage of the game.
After they were put in to bat first, DC took up the challenge and were brilliant with the bat. Both the openers, Shikhar Dhawan and Prithvi Shaw, gave the team a fine start with a 68-run partnership. Then, it was Marcus Stoinis who took up the onus and provided the team with the much-needed impetus propelling them to a score in excess of 190. The all-rounder raced his way to 53* off only 26 balls while Rishabh Pant contributed with a 25-ball 37. The RCB bowlers failed to capitalise on the crucial moments in the game and looked quite off colour.
As we all know, DC has got one of the best bowling line-ups in the tournament. Even against a mighty RCB batting line-up, they continued with their good work. Kagiso Rabada led from the front with a four-wicket haul while Anrich Nortje and Axar Patel picked up two wickets each. For RCB, Virat Kohli was the highest run-scorer with 43 off 39 balls. No one else managed to even go past the 20-run mark. As a result, DC managed to win the game by a massive margin of 59 runs since RCB could only get 137 runs on the board for the loss of 9 wickets.
Kagiso Rabada, the Purple Cap Holder, said
I think it was a really good win tonight. After that win at Sharjah, it gave us a lot of confidence. It also gives us massive confidence having won today. I don’t really plan to get wickets, you can only control in which areas to bowl. It was swinging a bit, so it would have been nice to bowl the second over. I don’t think it was a bad call to take me off after the first over. At the end of the day, it worked out. I think if you want to be the best you have to adjust to the conditions. I think the spinners did a really good job today, they set the game for us in the powerplay. Axar and Ashwin actually won us the game. All in all, it was a good performance and we are happy as a team.
Virat Kohli, the RCB captain, said
It didn’t go our way. They got off to a great start, in the next eight we pulled them back, but the last chase got away from us. As I said, we need to grab important chances. It is not like we are dropping half chances, but sitters. Again the execution at the end was not spot on. Chris (Morris) was really close to playing today but he didn’t really make it. We have four days before the next game so hopefully, he will be ready. The good thing is, we have won three out of five. We know we are playing good cricket. We just need to be professional in those big moments.
The conversation around chasing has been to have one big partnership. With dew setting in, if you have eight wickets in hand in the last 10, the game is on even if you need 100 or more. DC are playing some really good cricket. Their batting is fearless. They have got pace, they have got good spinners. I won’t say they are unbeatable, but they will be hard to beat. Against this side, you have to bring your A-game. We didn’t tonight.
Shreyas Iyer, the DC captain, said
Getting four out of five, I will take that any day. Kudos to the boys. Also, the temperament shown in pressure situations. The strategy was to play with freedom and be fearless. We have got good youngsters in our team who are filled with energy. Just that we have to go out and execute our talent and skill. It is really important for us to get good recovery after the games. It is not easy when you are in the bio-bubble. We try to get into team activities and get to know each other well. It is really saddening when your senior-most player who has been doing so well misses out. We will miss him, but we have got good replacements as well.
Axar Patel, the Man of the Match, said
The way the wicket was, I knew it was holding up. So I was ready to bowl in the Powerplay. And you can see the results for yourself. I spoke to the batsmen who told me it was stopping at them. So my plan was to bowl my stock ball, but bowl them within the stumps and also keep changing the pace. I was looking to defend when I just started, but when the third ball turned, I changed gears and got into attack mode.