After a defeat against the Sunrisers Hyderabad in their season opener, Royal Challengers Bangalore made a strong comeback with a 15-run win against the Delhi Daredevils while defending a relatively low total. Their next opponents are the Kings XI Punjab, whom they’ll be facing at the Holkar Stadium in Indore. Though Shane Watson put everyone in ambiguity about the return of Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers during the post-match presentation on Saturday, there has been no official statement about the two stalwarts from the team management yet.
Here is a glance at the XI that RCB might play on Monday against KXIP:
Top order: Chris Gayle, Shane Watson, Mandeep Singh
Though the combination wasn’t a great success against Delhi, it is most likely that RCB are going to go ahead with the same. With skipper Watson opening the batting, RCB get an option of either playing an extra batsman or an extra bowler depending on the conditions. Mandeep Singh got starts in both games but couldn’t score big. In the absence of Kohli and de Villiers, the top order is expected to fire if they have to chase down a big total or post a big score.
Middle order: Kedar Jadhav, Vishnu Vinod
Kedar Jadhav was the lynchpin in RCB’s win against Delhi. The wicket-keeper batsman was on top his game as he staggered to 69 off just 37 balls to ensure that RCB posted a challenging total on the board. Vishnu Vinod, who was named the replacement for KL Rahul wasn’t impressive in the first game but is expected to fire in the matches to follow.
All-rounders: Stuart Binny, Pawan Negi
Stuart Binny’s medium pace along with his hard-hitting towards the slog overs come in handy, especially if the run-rate is already soaring. Pawan Negi seemed in good touch with the bat against his former team was dismissed while trying the raise the stakes. He bowled the final over, a decision which turned out to be an excellent one as Negi scalped 2 wickets in it, giving away just 3 runs. Negi’s left-arm slow bowling isn’t something that the opposition can take lightly.
Pacers: Tymal Mills, Billy Stanlake
The England seamer and the Aussie pacer bowled really well to defend a small total against Delhi. They bowled crucial dot balls and controlled the run flow. Stanlake also dismissed youngsters Nair and Samson, who could’ve caused enough damage to take a DD beyond the line. The two pacemen will be expected to continue their good form in the coming days as well.
Spinners: Y Chahal, Iqbal Abdulla
Chahal has been RCB’s MVP so far. He has conceded runs at less than 6 in both the games and has been instrumental. Abdulla was a little expensive but he managed to get rid the dangerous looking Sam Billings and Chris Morris to take RCB home. On a slower Indore track, the two spinners will be more than handy.