With the 14th IPL ready for restart after being suspended earlier in the year due to COVID-19, RCB is back and raring to go to secure their first IPL for the franchise.
Can Virat and AB lead the squad to become champions or will history repeat itself once again?
RCB had a great start to the season in April, winning 5 out of their 7 games and strongly placed in 3rd position, just behind CSK due to the Net-run rate.
With their new-look squad, RCB was able to find the right balance between batting and bowling combinations.
Shifting Virat to the top of the order really paid dividends and New signings Maxwell and Jamieson really hit the ground running. Maxwell was the team’s highest run-scorer in Phase 1 with scoring 223 runs with an average of 39.
With their new bowling attack which was predominantly led by fast, young Indian bowlers RCB looked like a threat which in previous seasons they have not been considered as a strong bowling unit.
Harshal Patel was a revelation picking up 17 wickets in 7 games and being the rightful owner of the purple cap going into phase 2 of the IPL.
With a team normally needing 8-9 wins to get into the playoffs spot, RCB will be feeling confident in making one of these spots their Own.
RCB’S UAE RECORD in IPL:
With the tournament being shifted to the UAE, RCB will be confident going into the competition based on their previous results from the 2020 tournament held in UAE.
RCB won 5 of their 7 games in the regular IPL season in 2020. 3 of their remaining games this season will be played in Dubai and they will be confident in picking up points at this venue.
Sharjah is one of the smallest grounds in world cricket and it’s known for bowlers flying all around the park. With their new look bowling line-up and having the biggest hitters in the likes of Maxwell and AB Devilliers, RCB will be confident going into Phase-2 of the IPL 2021. r
RCB have strengthened the squad in Phase 2 even with obvious absentees
RCB’s Australian trio of Adam Zampa, Kane Richardson, and Daniel Sams have not returned for the IPL. Zampa and Richardson withdrew from the IPL in India itself due to the covid rise. Daniel Sam has taken leave as he’s citing his mental health.
RCB did not ponder much and fulfilled their foreign quota with Sri Lankan all-rounder Wanindu Hasranga, fast bowler Dishmantha Chameera and Singapore’s young sensation Tim David. Hasaranga has become a mainstay of the Sri-Lankan setup due to the flexibility in his batting position and his ability to cut the flow of runs.
Tim David would be the first-ever Singaporean to play in the IPL. RCB picked him up after seeing him perform very well in the BBL 2020-21 and also in The hundred.
One player missing that might hurt is all-rounder Washington Sundar. Sundar is out because of a finger injury, however, RCB has enough Indian back-up to replace Sundar.
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Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Yuzvendra Chahal, Devdutt Padikkal, Harshal Patel, Mohammed Siraj, Navdeep Saini, Shahbaz Ahmed, Pavan Deshpande, Glenn Maxwell, Sachin Baby, Rajat Patidar, Mohammed Azharuddeen, Kyle Jamieson, Dan Christian, Suyesh Prabhudessai, KS Bharat, Tim David, Dushmantha Chameera, Wanindu Hasaranga.
RCB Probable starting XI
Virat Kohli, Devdutt Padikkal, Ab de Villiers, Glenn Maxwell, Rajat Patida, Wanindu Hasaranga, Kylie Jamieson, Mohammed Siraj, Harshal Patel, Navdeep Saini, Yuzvendra Chahal.