Along with AB de Villiers, skipper Virat Kohli was going great guns at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium against Mumbai Indians on Friday. The two were well settled at the crease with RCB’s score reading 110/1 at the end of the 15th over. But his untimely dismissal in the 16th over changed the complexion of the game and RCB lost the plot to finish on 142/5.
Back in the team after a shoulder injury saw him miss RCB’s first three games of this edition of the IPL, Kohli returned with a bang on Friday as he looked to take the attack to the Mumbai Indians from the word go.
He announced his arrival with a trademark six over the head of Tim Southee in the latter’s second over. A couple of steps down the track and the first ball of the second over of the innings went for a maximum.
That was just the beginning as he kept punishing the bowlers. He struck the silken drives, the wristy flicks and the occasional lofted shots. In fact, he was in such dominant form that ABD was happy to play second fiddle.
It was one of those rare occasions when ABD had not hit a single boundary in the first 15 deliveries he had faced in a T20 game. But it was more about handing the strike to an in-form Kohli and enjoying the show.
Going into the 16th over, the scoring rate wasn’t extraordinary, 7.33, but with two of the world’s most destructive batsmen at the crease going into the death overs, acceleration was a given.
But Mitchell McClenaghan dismissed Kohli off the third ball of the 16th over, caught by Jos Buttler at the cover boundary for 62. And that was the start of the end of the RCB batting.
De Villiers was dismissed in the 17th over for 19 off 21 balls and the rest of the batsmen just failed to make it count. In the end, RCB managed just 32 runs in the last five overs, without a single boundary, as what looked like a prospective fighting total turned out to be completely under-par.