Royal Challengers Bangalore have been dogged by Murphy’s Law — ‘Everything that can go wrong, will go wrong’ — since the start of this season. Bowled out for 70 in the opening game of IPL-12, the slide has been relentless for Virat Kohli’s franchise. Earlier this week, in a clash of ‘wooden spooners’ RCB firmly emerged as the bottom-placed team so far with four defeats in four games. The road doesn’t get any easier for Bangalore from here on as they face impressive Kolkata Knight Riders at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Friday.
KKR came very close to maintaining an unbeaten streak this season against the Delhi Capitals last weekend and were only eked out via a ‘Super Over’. The Dinesh Karthik-led side have done most things right this year and the X-factor for them has been West Indian all-rounder Andre Russell. The Jamaican powerhouse is averaging 79.5 this season but more importantly has a strike-rate of 248.43 coming lower down the order. Russell would relish the wayward stuff on offer by the RCB bowlers, who have struggled to keep any batting line-up in check. His form down the order has made up for inconsistent KKR top-order especially their opening combination.
The RCB need urgent improvement in all departments of the game but primarily their batting and bowling. Barring Yuzvendra Chahal, none of the RCB bowlers have looked remotely threatening and skipper Kohli and AB de Villiers’ continued failures have hurt the side badly. The Bengaluru track is a batsmen’s paradise and KKR will be looking forward to another run-feast against RCB, who have already conceded 232 runs this season in a match to the Sunrisers Hyderabad.