Royal Challengers Bangalore have found a new lease of hope in current season of Indian Premier League after consecutive victories. With a poor start to the campaign, RCB led by Virat Kohli is still at No. 7th position with just 10 points in 12 games. But with two consecutive victories in a row, especially a 10-wicket win over Kings XI Punjab in their previous match, RCB looks poised in the competition of going through to the Playoffs. Things are still not easy, as they will host the table toppers Sunrisers Hyderabad in Bengaluru on Thursday. The Kane Williamson-led SRH are already into the Playoffs, and they would be eager to win the remaining two matches and finish strongly in the group stages. For RCB though, almost everything hinges on a victory in the match. Here are all the possible scenarios in the match:
RCB skipper Virat Kohli has maintained team’s existence to win all their remaining matches to qualify. Now they are against Sunrisers who have been in great form this season so far. If RCB manages to win, they will become the fourth team to have 12 points in 13 games, after Mumbai, Punjab, and Kolkata. And It might either put them in the 4th position in the table or 5th, depending on Net Run Rate. MI having an NRR of +0.384, RCB needs to register a big win to climb up to the 4th position. They would still need to beat RR in their next encounter though, to make it through the Playoffs while hoping results of Mumbai Indians, Rajasthan and Kings XI Punjab go in their favour.
SRH, on the other hand, too much depended on opener Shikhar Dhawan (369 runs) and skipper Kane Williamson (544 runs) for the opening order. Williamson has been proved as a clever leader, who would look to strengthen the team as table-topper and ensure a great finish at the end of the league stage. Apart from Openers, Yusuf Pathan (186), Manish Pandey (189) and Shakib-Al-Hasan (166) have also chipped in at crunch situations for SRH. The bowlers, led by India pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar (8), have been terrific. Bhuvneshwar has been backed up superbly by Siddharth Kaul (13 wickets), Sandeep Sharma (8), leg-spinner Rashid Khan (13) and Shakib-Al-Hasan (12). Given their consistent run, SRH would be expected to pull it off on Thursday but RCB, having rediscovered some form, might just spring a surprise.
RCB Probable XI: Parthiv Patel, Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Mandeep Singh, Sarfaraz Khan, Moeen Ali, Colin de Grandhomme, Tim Southee, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal.
SRH Probable XI: Shikhar Dhawan, Alex Hales, Kane Williamson, Manish Pandey, Deepak Hooda, Shakib Al Hasan, Shreevats Goswami, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Siddarth Kaul, Sandeep Sharma.