Kohli wanted to chase but the lost toss forced them to bat first. The fit AB de Villiers returned in this match and Umesh Yadav replaced Siraj. After 7 runs in first two overs, RCB got a huge blow as the skipper Kohli got out in the third over. Patel and de Villiers smashed Shardul Thakur for 16 runs in the sixth over and took RCB to the total of 49. Patel and de Villiers added 47 runs before de Villiers was caught by du Plessis at the boundary. Patel and Akshdeep Nath added another 41 runs. At the end of 10 overs, RCB managed to score 74 for the loss of 2 wickets. After Nath’s wicket in the 13th over, Patel too got out at the total of 124 runs in the 16th over. Stoinis and Negi failed, however, Moeen Ali smashed 26 off 16, with 5 boundaries to ensure RCB’s score to cross 160.
RCB couldn’t have asked for a better start with the ball, as Steyn removed Watson and Raina. With two more wickets, that of du Plessis and Jadhav, before the end of the powerplay, RCB limited CSK to 32. Their bowlers could not break Dhoni and Rayudu’s partnership till the 14th over. They kept on taking wickets regularly but could not remove Dhoni till the end. Umesh Yadav had 26 runs to defend in the last over but it looked too little against mighty Dhoni as he smashed Yadav for boundaries and sixes and managed to get 24. Thanks to the slower last ball which Dhoni missed, RCB sealed the match before it could enter the Super Over.
Patel was the highest scorer with his 53 runs in 37 balls. M Ali’s cameo of 26 runs in 16 balls was equally crucial. Steyn took two wickets for just 29 runs. While Yadav got 2 for 47 runs.
Dhoni opted to bowl first after winning the toss considering the dew factor and the general comfort level the batsmen feel while chasing in the IPL. CSK got their first breakthrough early in the 3rd over when Chahar took the big scalp of Kohli. The powerplay went in CSK’s favour as RCB could score just 49. Jadeja removed de Villiers in the seventh over with the help of du Plessis’ catch. Jadeja-du Plessis duo grabbed another one as Akshdeep Nath fell in the 13th over when RCB’s total was 99. Bravo finally got the success and removed Patel in the 16th over. Soon Tahir removed Stoinis, while Chahar got his second wicket in Negi in the 19th over. With 11 runs off Bravo’s final, CSK got a below-par target of 162.
CSK lost Watson and Raina both in the first over. Faf du Plessis fell soon in the 4th over from Yadav. At the end of the 6th over, CSK were 4 wickets down with just 32 on the board, losing Jadhav. Dhoni walked in to join Rayudu, and both started accumulating runs at a regular pace. They added crucial 55 runs for the fifth wicket before Rayudu got bowled out. CSK crossed 100 in the 16th over with Dhoni’s straight sixer. After losing Jadeja and Bravo, the task of finishing the game was left solely on Dhoni’s shoulder. He almost sealed the match by hitting a boundary and 3 sixes to Yadav in the 20th over, in which 26 runs were needed. As 2 needed in the last ball, Dhoni missed to connect the ball and ended up at the losing side just by one run.
Dhoni scored heroic 84 runs in just 48 balls that included 7 sixes. Rayudu contributed with 29-balls-29. Chahar took two wickets for 25 while Jadeja grabbed two for 29 runs.
Royal Challengers Bangalore are to play another home match on 24 April at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru against Kings XI Punjab. While KXIP lost in 3 out of past 4 matches, RCB must be confident with 3 wins in previous 4 games; and they would want to go for another one, at the home surface.
Chennai Super Kings will play against Sunrisers Hyderabad on 23 April at Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai. At one hand, CSK lost their past two games, while SRH were victorious in their previous two matches. This will be the contest between the number 1 versus the number 4 team, separated by just two wins or four points.
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