IPL 2018: Match 48, KXIP vs RCB, Preview – T20 superstars brace up for yet another run-fest
Both the teams are in a must-win situation which should make the contest interesting
Updated - May 15, 2018 5:45 pm
Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) have found themselves in a flux by losing their recent encounter against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). They will now have to win at least a couple of matches out of the three left and the opponent they are facing on Monday are in a similar situation as well. Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) were blessed the other night as Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers fired together as they gunned down the chase of 182 with utter ease. They will have to continue their winning momentum and even a loss can end their season prematurely.
The seven-day break has sucked all the momentum out of the home side as they have tailed off significantly as the tournament has progressed. Only KL Rahul has been consistent as the middle-order has been dismal throughout the season. Moreover, the bowlers are also not performing up to the potential with only Andrew Thye proving his worth in every game. It was only him who took 4 wickets when KKR plundered 245 runs against them on a pitch which was a featherbed for the batsmen.
The situation is even worse when it comes to RCB. They are overly dependent on their skipper Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers. In case, they don’t perform, the team struggles more often than not. The bowlers somehow forget their lines and lengths at the death and give away all the good work done in the earlier overs. The same happened in the game against Delhi when their best bowlers Tim Southee and Mohammed Siraj leaked 56 runs in the last 4 overs and allowed the opposition to post a daunting total.
Holkar Cricket Stadium witnessed one of the high-scoring encounters in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL) when KKR and Punjab scored a total of 459 runs in 40 overs. A similar track is expected to welcome the two teams again as the explosive batsmen from both the sides would be raring to hit the straps.
Kings XI Punjab
Kings XI are still having issues with their middle order which wasted the start provided by KL Rahul once again. They were well on track in the chase of 246 runs but lost too many wickets in the middle overs which left the opener struggling to accelerate the run-scoring. Manzoor Dar has to come in place of Mayank Agarwal who bagged a golden duck in the last match. The rest of the line-up should be same as the bowlers will have to respond if the batsmen go against them which is likely to happen once again.
Probable XI: Chris Gayle, KL Rahul (wk), Aaron Finch, Karun Nair, Manzoor Dar, Axar Patel, R Ashwin (c), Andrew Tye, Barinder Sran, Mohit Sharma, Mujeeb ur Rahman
Royal Challengers Bangalore
They have already changed their team combinations a lot of times and now would like to stick to the winning combination. The opening combination of Moeen Ali and Parthiv Patel is likely to continue for one more game. Virat and De Villiers follow then who are in good form. The likes of Mandeep Singh and Sarfaraz Khan have to contribute significantly now as the bowling attack will be under the lid in Indore. They will have to execute their plans better else the opposition might take the game away from them in the death overs.
Probable XI: Parthiv Patel (wk), Moeen Ali, Virat Kohli (c), AB de Villiers, Mandeep Singh, Sarfaraz Khan, Colin de Grandhomme, Tim Southee, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal
Focus will be on
Chris Gayle (Kings XI Punjab)
Chris Gayle has tailed off completely in the last few matches. His form has been a worry now for Punjab as his partner KL Rahul is going smoothly at the other end. With the struggling middle-order, it is important for the big man to step up as the things are getting very close in the points table. He has not contributed significantly to the team cause ever since the trailblazing knock against KKR earlier in the season. Even he must have realised the fact and would be itching to play a match-winning inning for his side.
AB de Villiers (Royal Challengers Bangalore)
AB de Villiers showed what he can do once he gets going against Delhi Daredevils (DD). But he has been very inconsistent this season and would like to continue his form in this game as well. Moreover, the pitch is also flat which might lit up his eyes to go bonkers from the word go. it is very important for him to stay in the middle to calm the panic in the dugout and the fate of the team will more or less depend on his performance in this match. If the skipper Virat Kohli joins him then it will be yet another class treat for the spectators.
Head to Head
Played- 21, Kings XI Punjab – 12, Royal Challengers Bangalore – 9
TV– Star Sports 1, Star Sports 1 HD, Star Sports 1 Hindi, Star Jalsha (Bengali), Star Maa Movies (Telegu), Star Sports Tamil
Live Streaming– Hotstar & YuppTv
Match Timings: 20:00 IST, 14:30 GMT