Royal Challengers Bangalore
Royal Challengers Bangalore. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

The 33rd match of the Indian Premier League saw action between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Rajasthan Royals in Dubai. RCB won the contest amazingly by seven wickets on the back of De Villiers’ brilliance. Batting first, Rajasthan posted great 177/6 on the board, and skipper Steve Smith seemed to have found his rhythm. Smith (57 off 36) and Robin Uthappa (41 off 22) pushed RR to post a respectable total.

AB de Villiers was named as the player of the match for his sheer heroics. Cameos by Jos Buttler (24 off 25) and Rahul Tewatia (19* off 11) remained significant to get their team going. Chris Morris was stunning from RCB’s bowling unit as he conceded just 26 runs to pick four crucial wickets. Yuzvendra Chahal also scalped two wickets for his team.

AB de Villiers shines once again for RCB

Hunting down the target, Devdutt Padikkal fetched 35 runs for his team. However, Virat Kohli (43 off 32) and AB de Villiers (55* off 22) turned flag bearers of their batting line up once again to get the stylish victory in their bag. Rahul Tewatia remained economical from Rajasthan’s arsenal ad got one wicket on his name.

Losing skipper, Steve Smith said

Sure is a hard pill to swallow. Just got AB’d there. That’s two in a row we were in the box seat to win but didn’t. Disappointing. I think it was a good score on a slow wicket. I thought we built the pressure pretty well and it took a pretty special innings to take RCB home. We wanted to use Jaydev to the bigger boundary, he bowls a lot of slower stuff into the wicket. Obviously boundary not big enough for AB. [On his batting] Nice to spend a bit of time in the middle and get a bit of rhythm.

Winning skipper, Virat Kohli said

The individuals are stepping up and we’ve been done that all through the tournament, which is why we have 12 points. Very happy right now because after this we get three days off. To be honest, you’re always tense in chase because you’re not sure how many balls AB is going to get. Credit to Gurkeerat as well, he stuck with AB, got that important boundary. It doesn’t matter who the bowler is, he does what he does. AB is always been someone who’s been ready to look at the situation and adapt his game accordingly.

In my eyes he’s the most impactful player in the IPL. If he goes, the opposition know they have a slim chance and there’s a good reason for that. It’s purely because of the presence of someone like him that teams feel we are never out of the team. [Opening?] No our game pattern is very clear. Young Dev has batted beautifully, finchy has played some impact innings. We understand the dynamics and we’re sticking to our plans. The bowling has really stepped up this season. Looks we’re gonna be put under pressure but the guys have come back strongly. Morris has been brilliant, just that energy he brings. Saini, Washy and Isuru as well, the bowling has come together well.

Man of the match, AB de Villiers said

Extremely happy. I felt we bowled as well as we could have. Leaked some runs, no-balls which usually Yuzi doesn’t do. Went in feeling we gave away 15-20 too much. But Virat and I spoke that we string together some partenrships and then go ahead. I’m very very nervous and erratic [in chase] and I get very stressed like any player. I want to perform for the team and show the owners I’m here for a good reason.

And family, fans, and also for myself. Last game I didn’t perform my role as well as I should have, but this time I did. It’s a cat and mouse game, I always respect the bowlers. If they bowl well to me, they’ll have the upper hand. I didn’t hit even one of them [sixes] off the middle. When Unadkat was bowling, I was looking leg side but to be honet I was nervous because I knew I had to hit it well. Luckily I got a few away. we’ve had some good games and we’ve had some average games as well, let’s not kid ourselves. There’s a reason we’re not at the top of the table.

Source: Cricket News – CricTracker


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