IPL 2021, RCB Predicted XI vs KKR: Will Virat Kohli stick to the same winning combination for RCB vs KKR clash?
Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) are the only team to enjoy a perfect start to the Indian Premier League 2021 (IPL) season. The Virat Kohli-led side has won both their opening games so far and are sitting pretty at the top of the points table. It's still early days and like Kohli said after his team's previous win against Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH), RCB are not going to get carried away.
RCB, after beating the mighty five-time champions Mumbai Indians in their first game, staged a remarkable comeback to edge out SRH in their second game. In both the games, RCB have looked reassuring with both bat and ball and will face the Kolkata Knight Riders next.
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With KKR heading into this contest on the back of an embarrassing 10-run defeat to MI, as they failed to score 31 runs in 30 balls, RCB will go into their third game extremely high on confidence.
Will they stick to the same winning 11? Let's take a look at their predicted XI.
1) Devdutt Padikkal: The stylish southpaw did not have a convincing comeback to the RCB colours, scoring 11 off 13 balls, but he will definitely retain his place considering his exploits last IPL season and during the build-up to this tournament. Devdutt Padikkal is just one innings of 30-odd away from taking off this year.
2) Virat Kohli: RCB Skipper Virat Kohli will continue to open the batting with Karnataka batsman Padikkal. Kohli has already registered two 30+ scores in IPL 2021 and his contributions at the top are important for laying a strong foundation for the middle order.
3) Shahbaz Ahmed: The man with the 'golden arm' in the second match will definitely feature in this game and just like the second match, he is expected to come in at No.3. Shahbaz Ahmed picked up three wickets in one over against SRH and tilted the momentum to his team's favour single-handedly. He scored 14 off 10, including two fours.
4) Glenn Maxwell: Aussie all-rounder has taken to RCB like fish to water. In the first two matches, he has already gotten multiple monkeys off his back; be it not hitting a single six last season or not scoring a single fifty in the last five IPL editions. Glenn Maxwell's fighting 59 helped RCB post a respectable total, which eventually proved to be a winning total for the team. KKR must keep a special eye on him.
5) AB de Villiers: Wicketkeeper-batsman AB de Villiers had an off day with the bat but that doesn't mean KKR can take him lightly. It was ABD's 48-run innings that helped RCB beat MI in the season opener. Not only De Villiers is an important member of the team, but he's also a vital cog of the team leadership.
6) Washington Sundar: All-rounder Sundar is enduring a tough start to the tournament. He's gone wicketless so far but his economical spells in the powerplays prove to be crucial for RCB in halting the run-flow of the opposition.
7) Dan Christian: A handy batsman with wicket-taking abilities, Aussie all-rounder Dan Christian is also likely to retain his place in the team. While he hasn't contributes significantly, he hasn't done much wrong either.
8) Kyle Jamieson: Another purchase at the IPL 2021 auction that RCB would be happy with is Kyle Jamieson. An excellent death-over bowler who showed his capabilities with the bat in the last game with an important nine-ball 12. He also pocketed wickets in each match.
9) Harshal Patel: Many were left baffled with Kohli not bowling Harshal Patel with the new ball but little did they know that Kohli's decision to hold him back would prove to be a masterstroke. After a five-wicket haul in the first game, Patel followed it up with another brilliant last over against SRH, bagging two wickets to help RCB get over the line.
10) Mohammed Siraj: Hyderabad-born pacer Mohammed Siraj picked up two wickets in the last game. The Indian speedster bowled an economical spell of 0/22 in his four overs in the season opener. He will continue to share the new ball duties.
11) Yuzvendra Chahal: Leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal may have seen to hit a bad patch of form. In the first game, he gave away 41 runs in 4 overs and without picking up a wicket. Against SRH, he was more economical--29 runs in 4 overs--but also wicketless again. Kohli would hope to see Chahal back among wickets.
RCB Predicted XI: Devdutt Padikkal, Virat Kohli, Glenn Maxwell, AB de Villiers, Shahbaz Ahmed, Dan Christian, Washington Sundar, Kyle Jamieson, Harshal Patel, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal