Riding high on their opening match triumph, Royal Challengers Bangalore would look to continue the winning streak when they take on a struggling Kolkata Knight Riders at the Chinnaswamy stadium on Tuesday.
Led by Daniel Vettori, RCB beat Delhi Daredevils by 20 runs on Saturday and the New Zealander would hope his men would pull off yet another victory to make sure they don’t go haywire after making a good start, which has been the story until last IPL.
On the other hand, after tasting two defeats in a row, Kolkata Knight Riders would look to reverse their fortunes when they play their third match against southern powerhouse RCB.
RCB were impressive against DD, both A B de Villiers and Muttiah Muralitharan starred with bat and ball respectively.
RCB were served well by wily Muralitharan’s three for 25, after de Villiers set it up with a blazing 64 off 42 balls. He hit six fours and two sixes in an innings that gave Bangalore the platform.
On Tuesday, RCB would be hoping to get a rollicking start from Chris Gayle, who sat out due to fitness issues in the last match, and Tillakratane Dilshan.
Virat Kohli, the current toast of Indian cricket, would hope to fire after he had a brief stay at the crease scoring just eight runs.
If given a chance, Cheteshwar Pujara and Saurabh Tiwary, who know the conditions well, can also make useful contributions.
The rest of the batting too has solid names such as Andrew McDonald, de Villiers, Mayank Agarwal and Vettori apart from a tail which consists of Vinay Kumar, Zaheer Khan and Harshal Vikram Patel, who all have skills to add a few quick runs.
KKR, on the flipside, have failed to capitalise on their good batting and bowling line-up so far. They first lost to Delhi Daredevils in a rain-curtailed game and Rajasthan Royals yesterday.
In their next encounter with the RCB, KKR, who became the first team to lose both their matches this IPL, would look for a better batting performance and build partnerships to bounce back on the track of winning ways.
Losing nine wickets in a truncated match would be a cause of worry for any captain and this continued even in their next outing against RR where they lost four quick wickets in the form of Jacques Kallis, Gautam Gambhir, Brendon McCullum and Debabrata Das for just 25 runs in six overs.
Gambhir, who lost India’s vice-captaincy to Kohli, would look to give a solid start along side Kallis. A good start would help players like McCullum, Manoj Tiwary, Yusuf Pathan and Laxmi Ratan Shukla break the shackles.
Tiwary would be desperate to prove a point to the Indian team management after being denied a single opportunity during the entire tri-series in Australia and the subsequent Asia Cup in Bangladesh. Tiwary was the only batsman for KKR to make a half century scoring 59 against RR.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Daniel Vettori (Capt.), Mayank Agarwal, KP Appanna, Sreenath Aravind, Arun Karthik, Raju Bhatkal, AB de Villiers, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Muralidharen Gautam, Chris Gayle, Mohammad Kaif, Abrar Kazi, Zaheer Khan, Virat Kohli, Charl Langeveldt, Andrew McDonald, Abhimanyu Mithun, Muttiah Muralitharan, Karun Nair, Dirk Nannes, Ryan Ninan, Harshal Patel, Asad Pathan, Luke Pomersbach, Cheteshwar Pujara, Rilee Rossouw, Jamaluddin Syed Mohammad, Saurabh Tiwary, Vinay Kumar, Vijay Zol.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Gautam Gambhir (Capt.), Lakshmipathy Balaji, Rajat Bhatia, Manvinder Bisla, Debabrata Das, Marchant de Lange, Brad Haddin, Iqbal Abdulla, Chirag Jani, Jacques Kallis, Sarabjit Ladda, Brett Lee, Brendon McCullum, Eoin Morgan, Sunil Narine, Yusuf Pathan, James Pattinson, Sanju Samson, Pradeep Sangwan, Iresh Saxena, Shami Ahmed, Shakib Al Hasan, Laxmi Shukla, Ryan ten Doeschate, Manoj Tiwary, Jaydev Unadkat.