Royal Challengers Bangalore will take on Delhi Daredevils in their first home match at M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru, on Saturday evening. Earlier RCB got off to a poor start with a 35-run loss in the first match against Sunrisers Hyderabad in the 2017 IPL opener. For DD, Saturday’s match will be their first match of the tournament.
RCB Team Analysis and Overview:
RCB will continue to miss their charismatic leader and star batsman Virat Kohli due to a shoulder injury. Kohli has reiterated that he will not rush back into the side and that he will play only if he is 120 percent fit. AB de Villiers is likely to miss the second game as well due to back problem. Shane Watson will again lead the team in the match against DD. The RCB bowling was exposed against the batting line-up of the Sunrisers in the first game. Their batsmen got starts, but failed to carry on. RCB need to work on the shortcomings when they take on DD on Saturday.
RCB strengths: Despite the absence of Kohli and AB, RCB have a strong batting line-up that includes the likes of Chris Gayle, Mandeep Singh, Kedar Jadhav and Shane Watson. They have the batting firepower to put up a big score or chase down any target. If the Gayle-storm strikes, then DD bowlers will have to run for cover.
RCB weakness: They have an inexperienced bowling attack. They also leaked runs in the death overs against Sunrisers. RCB need to tighten up their bowling and not allow the opposition to run away with the match. RCB batting is stronger than bowling and hence they needs to take up more responsibility.
RCB (Possible XI):
Shane Watson (Captain)
DD Team Analysis and Overview: Delhi have been dealt with a major blow with star players Quinton de Kock and JP Duminy opting out of the 2017 IPL. Sri Lankan all-rounder Angelo Mathews too is unavailable for most part of IPL. They will be led by the ever-reliable Zaheer Khan and have few exciting talents in their squad. Sam Billings, Chris Morris, K Rabada, Pat Cummins, Corey Anderson, Carlos Brathwaite fill up the overseas players’ slots and hence, they have a problem of plenty in hand. They also have few in-form Indian players in Shreyas Iyer, Amit Mishra and Karun Nair.
Delhi Daredevils strengths: Delhi Daredevils have quality all-rounders in Anderson, Morris, Brathwaite who can bat and bowl commendably. They also have quality bowling attack in Amit Mishra, Mohammed Shami, Rabada and Cummins. Their batting too has been boosted by young Indian talent in Iyer, Nair and Pant. And led by the experienced Zaheer, DD should be able to give RCB a tough fight.
Delhi Daredevils weakness: DD’s lack of co-ordination between batting and bowling is their major problem. They tend to lose the grip over the match and let the opposition take over. They need the consistency throughout the 40 overs to win the match. DD were guilty of losing key moments in last year’s IPL and were pushed out of the top four. They need to work on this aspect.
DD (Possible XI)
Zaheer Khan (Captain)
Pitch report: M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru is a flat pitch where the ball comes on nicely to bat. This ground has always seen high-scoring games and even big targets have been chased down with ease. The team that wins toss would look to field as setting a target that can be safe is difficult to predict at this ground.
Weather report: Bengaluru weather can be as fickle as anything. It is extremely hot during the day but the weather dramatically changes during the evening. It brings in light showers with thunders. But heavy rain has stayed away till now. Hopefully, it will be away on Saturday evening as well.
Prediction and possible outcome: RCB will be playing at home and they know the conditions extremely well. They would look to put the opposition in, restrict them and chase down the target with aplomb. They have the batting might to make a big-innings score or chase down any target. But it won’t be easy against the bowling of DD that has versatility and variety. Zaheer Khan will be a tough nut to crack and Mishra will be difficult to score off. It will be more of RCB batting against DD bowling. We would go with RCB as they have the home support, familiar conditions and batting might to beat any opposition at home.
Possible Winner: RCB
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