Kings XI Punjab will be hoping to gather an easy two points from their clash against the Royal Challengers Bangalore today, as they push to make it to the playoffs with only five matches left for them to the playoffs. The Punjab side are coming off a four-day break, after their hiding of the Delhi Daredevils by a 10-wicket margin, bowling them out for a paltry 67 runs and then chasing it down in 7.5 overs. The Punjab side will be hoping they don’t trip over the struggling Bangalore side, who are at the bottom of the points table with just 5 points from 11 games and have no chance of making it to the playoffs. However, the RCB side, led by Virat Kohli, will certainly be looking to salvage some pride at home and put up a good show here at the Chinnaswamy today.
For Punjab, the bulk of the runs has been put on by the team’s foreign imports, with Hashim Amla scoring a good 315 runs (including a century) and Martin Guptill who also looked in ominous touch during his 27-ball half-century. However, with the business end of the league approaching, Punjab will look to their captain Glenn Maxwell, who has managed to score only 193 runs in 9 matches. The fans and his teammates would hope the swashbuckling batsman hits his stride, and soon. On the bowling front, Sandeep Sharma(who claimed 4 wickets) and Varun Aaron will be expected to do a repeat act of their performance against the Daredevils. The left arm spinner Axar Patel, who has 10 wickets from 9 matches, is also expected to play a critical role against the likes of RCB batsmen like Kohli, AB de Villiers and Gayle, who haven’t really fired in this tournament but can destroy any bowling on their day
For the RCB side, the performance of their two leg-spinners spinners – Samuel Badree (9 wickets) and Yuzvendra Chahal (11 wickets) has been a silver lining of the tournament. However their pacers have been far from impressive with Srinath Arvind, Adam Milne and Aniket Choudhary going for a lot of runs.
The match is critical for the KXIP side to win if they are to remain in contention for a playoffs spot, but they would expect stiff resistance from the Bangalore side who would be looking to give their fans at home something to cheer for today.
05 May 2017, 2000 Hrs IST
M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru
Head to Head
Overall: Matches played – 19, RCB Won – 8, KXIP Won – 11
Royal Challengers Bangalore:
Virat Kohli (captain), AB de Villiers, Chris Gayle, Yuzvendra Chahal, Harshal Patel, Mandeep Singh, Adam Milne, Vishnu Vinod (wicketkeeper), Sreenath Aravind, Kedar Jadhav (wicketkeeper), Shane Watson, Stuart Binny, Samuel Badree, Iqbal Abdulla, Travis Head, Sachin Baby, Avesh Khan, Tabraiz Shamsi, Tymal Mills, Aniket Chaudhary, Praveen Dubey, Billy Stanlake, Harpreet Singh.
Kings XI Punjab:
Glenn Maxwell (captain), David Miller, Manan Vohra, Hashim Amla, Shaun Marsh, Darren Sammy, Wriddhiman Saha (wicketkeeper), Nikhil Naik, Ishant Sharma, Armaan Jaffer, Martin Guptill, Eoin Morgan, Rinku Singh, Sandeep Sharma, Arman Jaffer, Anureet Singh, Mohit Sharma, KC Cariappa, Pradeep Sahu, Swapnil Singh, T Natrajan, Matt Henry, Varun Aaron, Axar Patel, Marcus Stoinis, Gurkeerat Mann, Rahul Tewatia.
RCB Probable Eleven
1 Chris Gayle, 2 Virat Kohli (capt), 3 AB de Villiers, 4 Kedar Jadhav (wk), 5 Sachin Baby/Vishnu Vinod, 6 Stuart Binny/Harpreet Singh, 7 Pawan Negi, 8 Yuzvendra Chahal, 9 Adam Milne/Tymal Mills, 10 Samuel Badree, 11 S Aravind
Kings XI Punjab Probable Eleven
1 Hashim Amla,2 Manan Vohra, 3 Glenn Maxwell, 4 Miller, 5 Gurkeerat Singh, 6 Darren sammy, 7 Wriddhiman Saha,8 Axar Patel, 9 Mohit Sharma,10 Sandeep Sharma, 11 T Natarajan.
- Kings XI Punjab have to figure out a way to face the RCB leg spinners Badree and Chahal, especially in the first few overs, which is where most of their damage has been done in the previous matches. Openers Guptill and Amla have looked in fine form, and skipper Maxwell will bank on their experience to face the spinners.
- RCB will have to shore up their batting woes, and a big knock is expected from the trio of Kohli, de Villiers and Gayle. The skipper would expect his batsmen to fire in unison, which is where the RCB strength is supposed to lie.
- With the RCB side out of contention for the playoffs, expect the management to give the reserves a go and rest the some of the non-performing regulars.