Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) will be looking to end their disappointing Indian Premier League (IPL) season with a win when they face Delhi Daredevils (DD) on Sunday. RCB are placed at the bottom of the table with five points in 12 matches, and although the result will not affect their standings, a victory will certainly be a boost for the players ahead of the Champions Trophy. (IPL Standings)
On paper, Royall Challengers Bangalore have one of the most explosive batting line-ups in IPL, but nothing clicked for them this season. The trio of Virat Kohli, Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers has failed to perform consistently and that has been one of the biggest reasons behind their horror show.
Even the middle order has shown no real backbone, and the fact that they have been bowled out four times in IPL 2017 speaks volumes about their struggles. Kedar Jadhav was the only notable contributor for RCB this time but his stray performances were not enough to put RCB’s campaign back on track.
The performance of the RCB bowlers was way better than their batsmen. Yuzvendra Chahal (13 wickets), Pawan Negi (13 wickets) and Samuel Badree (9 wickets) were all among wickets but were let down by the pace attack. The trio of Sreenath Arvind, Tymal Mills and Aniket Choudhary ended up conceding a lot of runs and that just added to RCB’s misery this season.
On the other hand, Delhi Daredevils have had a mixed run in IPL 2017. There was no dearth of good performances from the DD players, but their inability to finish games proved to be their bane. With 12 points from 13 games, they will finish the season in sixth position irrespective of Sunday’s result.
The biggest plus for Delhi Daredevils this season has been the form of their Indian youngsters who form the crux of the batting line-up. Rishabh Pant, Shreyas Iyer and Sanju Samson have all shown glimpses of brilliance this season with the trio scoring over 1000 runs for their side. The other promising youngster in the team -- Karun Nair -- did not enjoy the same level of success but his 45-ball-65 was instrumental in his team’s victory over Rising Pune Supergiant on Friday.
When it comes to bowling, DD’s pace attack was considered to be one of the best in the history of the tournament. With the likes of Kagiso Rabada, Chris Morris and Pat Cummins providing support to Zaheer Khan and Mohammed Shami, it felt like the perfect line-up. But, they were not able to deliver on those promises and the lack of support from the spinners seriously dented DD’s chances of making the play-offs.
When it comes to the head-to-head record, RCB hold an 11-6 advantage over the hosts but DD will surely be banking on their winning momentum to end the season on a positive note.