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Challengers, Royals look to 'spin' things around

Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Daniel Vettori and Rajasthan Royals captain Shane Warne can spin the red cherry a mile. Rohit Bhaskar reports Matchbox

cricket Updated: Apr 19, 2011 01:51 IST
Rohit Bhaskar

Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Daniel Vettori and Rajasthan Royals captain Shane Warne can spin the red cherry a mile. However, when the two teams face off at the M Chinnaswamy stadium here on Tuesday, it's not the ball they'll be looking to turn. Rather, they'll be looking to turn around the floundering fortunes of their respective sides.

After starting the season with two wins on the trot, Warne again looked poised to extract the most of the limited resources at his disposal. However, humiliating back-to-back losses against the Kolkata Knight Riders has cut them to size.

Watson disappoints
Much was expected of Aussie all-rounder Shane Watson.

However, he has yet to set the IPL stage alight. Watson's return also meant South African spinner Johan Botha, who was a revelation in his new role as pinch-hitter in the opening two games, had to sit out because of the four foreigners per match limitation.

Another big-hitter, New Zealand's Ross Taylor, has been rather subdued this season. The former RCB batsman, who played many hard-hitting knocks over the past two seasons, has not spent much time in the middle. A move up the order, and a chance to get a decent hit, will stand him in good stead.

Dravid raring to go
After missing the last game with a muscle strain, Royals' makeshift opener Rahul Dravid will be raring to go against his former team. With his vast knowledge of the conditions he will be a key factor.

For Vettori's RCB, who are currently bottom of the IPL standings, this match is the perfect opportunity to get back into the groove after three losses. AB de Villiers has been the lone bright spot for the Royal Challengers this season, and, had it not been for his unbeaten 54, the team would still be searching for its first win.

Looking Jaded
India's World Cup heroes Zaheer Khan and Virat Kohli have had their moments, but after the energy spent in ending India's 28-year hunt, have looked a bit jaded.

The biggest disappointment, however, has been Sri Lankan all-rounder Tillakaratne Dilshan, who has gotten out in single digits in three of the four matches. If Dilshan, one the most potent players in the shortest format of the game, gets it right on Tuesday, RCB fans could be in for a treat.