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The Indian Premier League 2020 has already witnessed few outstanding matches in this season and with few matches left for the completion of the league stages, the fans are assured for some high octane matches in the store. The Sunday double- header will see two thrilling encounters in the form of the Royal Challengers taking on the struggling Chennai Super Kings and the defending champions locking horns with the Rajasthan Royals. 

The spirited Royal Challengers will take on the bottom dwellers Chennai Super Kings at the Dubai International Stadium, the encounter will mark the 44th game of the IPL 2020. The Royal Challengers Bangalore find themselves in a comfortable 3rd position on the table with 14 points and a win here would ensure a spot for them in the play-offs. While, even a miracle can not save the Chennai Super Kings, though a win here would disrupt the rhythm of the Bangalore side and also a consolation to the CSK fans.

Royal Challengers Bangalore come into this game on the back of a dominating performance against the two times champions Kolkata Knight Riders. KKR after winning the toss elected to bat first. The brilliant bowling of Mohammed Siraj made the KKR batsmen feel the heat and they were reduced to 14/4 in their first 4 overs. Chahal and Sundar ensured that the hard work of the pacer did not go in vain as the KKR were bundled out for 84 runs. RCB were given a solid start by their openers and not for a moment KKR looked to threaten the Virat Kohli led side as RCB ended up winning the match by 8 wickets and seven overs to spare.

Chennai Super Kings on the other side were once again on the losing side, this time with their arch rivals Mumbai Indians. The match was one way traffic ever since the CSK were reduced to 3 for the loss of 4 wickets. The team, courtesy of all- rounder Sam Curran managed to reach a target of 114. But MI were in no mood to play it out and came out all guns blazing as Quinton de Kock and Ishan Kishan were seen dominating the bowlers and hitting them all around the park. Their outstanding partnership ensured CSK had to face their first 10 wicket loss in the history of the tournament.

The previous encounter between the two sides went in favor of the Bangalore side as they ended up on the winning side by a margin of 37 runs.

Can Virat Kohli and Co. confirm their play- off berth by defeating the Men in Yellow? Or will the Chennai side be able to delay the RCB party?

Head to Head

Matches Played- 26, RCB- 9, CSK- 16, N/R- 0

Team News

RCB seem to be doing a wonderful job this season and seem very well determined in the hunt for their maiden IPL title. The inclusion of Mohammad Siraj has been a gem of a decision for the RCB, as the pacer went on to become the only bowler to bowl two maidens in the same match and ended up with an astonishing figures of 4-2-8-3. The captain and management will be more than happy to continue with the same team.

Chennai Super Kings on the other side did try a couple of changes in the game against Mumbai Indians but nothing worked in their favor as both N. Jagadeesan and Ruturaj Gaikwad were dismissed for ducks. Said that, CSK do not have anything to lose now and will be happy to give the youngsters one more opportunity. 

Pitch and Conditions

The Dubai pitch has been an ideal pitch for cricket as it looks well balanced for the batsmen and bowlers. Even though the pitch has slowed down drastically, we saw in the match between Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad the score of 156 being chased down with ease by the SRH batsmen. 

Any score of 165 plus by the team batting first could fancy their winning chances as the spinners well have a very important role to play.

The conditions are once again in favor as there is no chance of rain whatsoever. The temperature is expected to be hovering in the 28- 30 degree range. While, the humidity is expected to reach a maximum of 52%. The conditions are now much better for the players as the summer is coming to end in the country.

Probable Playing Xl

Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB): Devdutt Padikkal, Aaron Finch, Virat Kohli (c), AB de Villiers (wk), Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Washington Sundar, Chris Morris, Isuru Udana, Mohammed Siraj, Navdeep Saini, Yuzvendra Chahal

Chennai Super Kings (CSK): Sam Curran, Faf du Plessis, Ambati Rayudu, N Jagadeesan, MS Dhoni (c & wk), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ravindra Jadeja, Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur, Josh Hazlewood, Imran Tahir

Key Battles

Devdutt Padikkal (RCB) vs Deepak Chahar (CSK)

Devdutt Padikkal (RCB) vs Deepak Chahar (CSK)

The young Devdutt Padikkal has been one of the reasons for the success of the RCB side this season and he definitely looks like a future candidate for Team India. Though not an explosive opener he is someone who ensures the team gets off to a steady and stable start and does an amazing job in rotating the strike. The left- hander has scored 321 runs in the 10 matches played this season.

CSK will know the threat the left- hander can bring about and they will be hoping their pacer Deepak Chahar can deliver the goods. Chahar has been in terrific form in the recent games and has been moving the ball both the ways. He will be looking forward to breaking the opening fortress of the RCB as early as possible. The Right- arm has picked up 10 wickets from the 11 matches played this season. 

Can Chahar stop the in-form RCB opener? Or will Padikkal continue to pile up the runs?

Faf du Plessis (CSK) vs Mohammed Siraj (RCB)

Faf du Plessis (CSK) vs Mohammed Siraj (RCB)

Faf du Plessis has been one of only positives of the Chennai Super Kings, the other being the all- rounder Sam Curran. The former proteas captain has been doing a wonderful job this season but has been seen struggling in the last few matches. But he is someone who needs just one good shot to get back to his prime. The opener has scored 376 runs in the 11 matches played so far in this season. 

Mohammed Siraj on the other side has been thriving with form and he is likely to be pumped up after the exceptional spell he had against the Kolkata Knight Riders. RCB will be hoping he can replicate that performance once again and if that does happen the match would be over much before the 20- overs quota. Though the pacer has not played many games this season, he has made sure he makes full use of the opportunities. He has picked up 6 wickets from the 4 games played.

Can the resurgent Siraj keep picking up the crucial wickets? Or will the CSK star bounce back?

Prediction

Royal Challengers Bangalore are just one win away from confirming their play- off spot and this looks the perfect match for the Bangalore side as the Chennai Super Kings look to be at their worst phase. Virat Kohli and Co. look very well determined in the hunt for their maiden IPL title and they will be hoping the players continue their great form. 

The conditions look in favor of the RCB as their batsmen seem to be in much better shape going into the match. Though the fact the Chennai Super Kings do not have anything to lose might work in favor of them. The only way CSK can get past the Bangalore side would be if their opener Faf du Plessis plays out of his skin. 

Cricwizz predicts Chennai Super Kings to win the match