Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) are sitting pretty on top of the points table in the 2021 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). In their previous game, Virat Kohli and Co won by 38 runs against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR).
Having won all their games at the Chepauk, the Challengers are set to play at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai against the Rajasthan Royals (RR) on Thursday, April 22. The Royals, in the meantime, have strained to find their feet. Not having Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer in their ranks have jolted them badly.
In their last game, Sanju Samson’s men slumped to a 45-run loss at the hands of Chennai Super Kings (CSK). On a head-to-head count, the Challengers and Royals are locked on 10 wins each. But on current form, RR have to bring forth their A-game to come out trumps.
Match – Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Rajasthan Royals – 16th match
Venue – Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai
Time – 7:30 PM IST, 02:00 PM GMT
Where to watch live – Star Sports Network, Hotstar
The pitch at the Wankhede Stadium has been an excellent one for batting. But over the last two matches or so, the track has helped the bowlers to quite a large extent. Teams should go for batting second with the dew likely to play a part.
The playing conditions will be clear with the temperature mostly around 30 degrees Celsius. There will be a bit of cloud cover, but with no chance of rain.
Avg first innings score: 170 (5 matches in IPL 2021 at the Wankhede)
Record of chasing teams: Won – 3, Lost – 2, Tied – 0
Probable Playing XIs:
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Devdutt Padikkal, Virat Kohli (C), Washington Sundar, AB de Villiers (WK), Glenn Maxwell, Dan Christian/Rajat Patidar/Daniel Sams, Shahbaz Ahmed, Kyle Jamieson, Harshal Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammad Siraj.
Bench: Suyash Prabhudessai, Sachin Baby, Pavan Deshpande, Rajat Patidar/Dan Christian/Daniel Sams, Mohammad Azharuddeen, Shahbaz Ahmed, Finn Allen, KS Bharat, Kane Richardson, Navdeep Saini, Adam Zampa
Jos Buttler, Manan Vohra, Sanju Samson (C & WK), Shivam Dube, David Miller, Riyan Parag, Chris Morris, Rahul Tewatia, Jaydev Unadkat/Shreyas Gopal, Chetan Sakariya, Mustafizur Rahman
Bench: Liam Livingstone, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Mahipal Lomror, Shreyas Gopal/Jaydev Unadkat, Andrew Tye, Anuj Rawat, Akash Singh, Jofra Archer, KC Cariappa, Mayank Markande, Kuldip Yadav, Kartik Tyagi
Played – 23 | Royal Challengers Bangalore – 10 | Rajasthan Royals– 10 |N/R – 0
At neutral venues
Played – 7 | Royal Challengers Bangalore – 5 | Rajasthan Royals – 2 |N/R – 0
Probable best batsman of the match
AB de Villiers– Royal Challengers Bangalore
AB de Villiers has been in jaw-dropping form in the ongoing edition of the T20 tournament. In three matches, the right-handed batter notched 125 runs at an average and strike rate of 62.50 and 189.39 respectively.
Against the Royals, the 37-year-old has hammered 648 runs at an average and strike rate of 46.29 and 146.61 respectively. Last year, he got an unbeaten 22-ball 55 against RR in Dubai.
Probable best bowler of the match
Harshal Patel– Royal Challengers Bangalore
Harshal Patel has arguably been the standout bowler for the Challengers thus far in the tournament. Bowling mostly at the death, the pacer has picked up nine wickets at an excellent economy rate of 5.75.
Moreover, with an average and strike rate of 7.66 and eight respectively, he has been able to tie down the batters. Against the Royals, Patel has picked up seven wickets from 15 overs at an economy of 6.60.
Today’s match prediction: Royal Challengers Bangalore to win the match.
Disclaimer: This prediction is based on the understanding, analysis, and instinct of the author. While making your prediction, consider the points mentioned, and make your own decision.
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