Virat Kohli and Chris Gayle exploded in unison as they slammed half-centuries and put on a century opening partnership as Royal Challengers Bangalore defeated Gujarat Lions by 21 runs in the Indian Premier League on Tuesday. (HIGHLIGHTS) (FULL IPL COVERAGE)
Virat Kohli’s warning to his Royal Challengers Bangalore teammates to tighten their game did wonders as they thumped Gujarat Lions for a crucial win in 2017 IPL at the SCA Stadium. (SCORECARD)
Royal Challengers Bangalore, the IPL 2016 runners-up, amassed 213/2 and then restricted Gujarat Lions to 192/7 despite Brendon McCullum’s blistering 44-ball 72.
The win helped Royal Challengers Bangalore move up one position to seventh while Gujarat Lions slumped to the bottom of the points table.
RCB finally got the start they have been searching as Virat Kohli (64 – 50 balls) and Chris Gayle (77 – 38 balls, 5x4, 7x6) raised an entertaining 122-run opening stand and helped post the highest total of IPL 10 after being put into bat.
Virat Kohli slammed his second half-century of IPL-10 while Gayle slammed his first half-century in 18 T20 innings after becoming the first batsman in the format to aggregate 10,000 runs when he reached three runs.
Gujarat Lions’ hopes of victory were undermined by RCB leg-spinnner Yuzvendra Chahal, who dismissed openers Dwayne Smith (1), Brendon McCullum (72) as well as GL skipper, Suresh Raina (23).
McCullum fights on
Barring McCullum’s entertaining knock (2x4s, 7x6s) and India U-19 World Cup captain Ishan Kishan’s 16-ball 39, which brought the equation down to 26 runs in the final over, there was hardly anything to cheer for Gujarat Lions’ fans after the abject surrender of the other batsmen.
Dwayne Smith (1) and skipper Suresh Raina (8-ball 23) fell early which didn’t help Gujarat Lions’ cause.
McCullum along with Aaron Finch (19) forged a 66-run third wicket partnership. He brought up his half-century with a flat six off Pawan Negi.
With the run-rate rising to 13 runs per over, McCullum had to take risks and eventually fell to Chahal, after a simple catch to Adam Milne at midwicket. That virtually put an end to Gujarat Lions’ hopes.
RCB explode after Powerplay
It is generally the Powerplay overs when the batsmen look to take maximum risks. RCB managed only 45 runs off the first six overs before exploding.
Gayle, making a comeback into the playing XI after AB de Villiers and spinner Samuel Badree were out with injuries, freed up after finally achieving the landmark of 10,000 runs with a single to third man.
In an over where Gayle cracked two consecutive boundaries and sixes to take 21 runs off, Ravindra Jadeja could have had the last laugh had Brendon McCullum’s hat not touched the rope while completing an acrobatic single-handed catch at long off fence.
While Gayle went hammer and tongs from one end, Kohli played the anchor.
Gujarat Lions had the chance to tighten the noose after Gayle fell leg before to seamer Basil Thampi and Kohli was caught by Dwayne Smith off Dhawal Kulkarni) before the death overs.
But Travis Head (30no – 16 balls) and Kedar Jadhav (38no – 16 balls) attacked as GL leaked 54 runs in the last 25 balls after Kohli fell. Jadeja’s final over cost 17 runs as he finished with 4-0-57-0, his worst figures in IPL.