RCB dismantle CSK and throw them down the ladder
It was a super Saturday breathing down our necks and we were barely done with the Houdini act by KKR for the second time straight against KXIP who were left to wonder what might have been, what merely was, what would have been had it been for one moment of brainfade. The south Indian derby was upon us with the battle of Fire and Ice at the Ring of Fire as RCB took on CSK and though this rivalry has been a one sided affair in the recent past, the current fates of both the teams made us all look forward to it whether the mighty MSD would coupe a comeback or the Kohli army would add to their dream start to the season.
After choosing to bat on a two-paced pitch, the Royals Challengers quietly saw off the early swing and moved to 103 for 4 in 14 overs. Having set the platform himself, Kohli launched from there, claiming 46 of the 66 runs they amassed in the last six overs, finishing with 169 for 4.
Sundar then removed both the in-form Super Kings openers Faf du Plessis and Shane Watson, limiting them to 26 for 2 – their lowest powerplay score this season. By the time MS Dhoni came out to bat at No.5 in the 15th over, the asking rate was hovering around 15. A fit-again Chris Morris and Isuru Udana eventually closed out the game with their assortment of cutters, helping the Royal Challengers climb to fourth on the points table.
After swinging three balls past the outside edge of Aaron Finch in his first over, Chahar knocked over the opener’s middle stump with an inswinger. Both Devdutt Padikkal, the other opener, and Kohli then simply played themselves in, pushing the Royal Challengers to 65 for 1 in ten overs. However, in the next over, Padikkal (33 off 34 balls) tried to manufacture a boundary off Thakur, but the cross-seamer messed with his timing, drawing a mis-hit to mid-off. Three balls later, Thakur bowled another cross-seamer, this time having AB de Villiers nicking off for a duck.
The Royals Challengers promoted Sundar to No.5 to potentially counter legspinner Karn Sharma and left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja. Sundar sized up a full legbreak from Sharma and slog-swept him over long-on for six, but when he tried to take on Sam Curran, he also nicked off.
The Virat Kohli Show
Kohli brought up his half-century, off his 39th ball, when he fiercely pulled Thakur to the fine-leg fence. He then cracked three sixes and a four in the final three overs, taking apart Curran, Thakur, and Bravo. Curran was so rattled that he floated two off-side wides in the 18th over while Thakur bowled a beamer in the 19th. Then, in the final over against Bravo, Kohli shuffled across, picked an attempted Bravo yorker from the tramline and scooped it away through the vacant spaces at fine leg for four despite falling on the floor. Kohli then couldn’t put Bravo’s variations away, but still went 2,2,2,2,1 to give the Royal Challengers a strong finish.
Another CSK chase kept holding for too late
The Super Kings were chasing for the seventh time this season, and it was the same-old story. After miscuing Sundar twice over the infield, du Plessis (8 off 10) dragged the offspinner to Morris, who was manning the longer leg-side boundary. When Sundar strayed down the leg side Watson (14 off 18) slog-swept him off for four, but when the batsman tried to repeat the dose off the next ball, he was bowled by a quick slider.
Ambati Rayudu could neither find the boundary or the gaps, struggling to 42 off 40 balls, with just four fours. Super Kings’ new No.4 N Jagadeesan also hit four fours and was the more fluent of the two in a 64-run partnership for the fourth wicket but it took 52 balls. The stand ended when Jagadeesan was run out by a direct hit from Morris for 33 off 28 balls. Dhoni cleared the boundary once before Yuzvendra Chahal dangled a slow legbreak away from his reach and had him slicing a catch to long-off. Game over for the Super Kings.
Here are the best tweets from the game last night: