The Royal Challengers Bangalore lost to Rising Pune Supergiant at the Chinnaswamy stadium in Bengaluru by 27 runs. RPS registered their second win of the season after losing three in a row. It was a bad day for the RCB boys as they failed to chase 162 on a ground known for chasing in the past. However, the Bengaluru wicket seems to have changed after the KSCA decided to have a complete makeover to improve the drainage system. All games played so far at the Chinnaswamy have been low scoring.
After winning the toss Virat set RPS into bat first. RPS, with contributions from Rahane, Tripathi, Smith and Dhoni managed t score 161 for the loss of 8 wickets. Milne and Arvind bowled economically taking two wickets each. Watson was quite expensive in his 4 overs going for 44 runs with 1 wicket. RCB got to a bad start as they lost Mandeep Singh for a duck. Virat Kohli was dropped early on in the innings and had a good partnership with ABD. After losing Virat, RCB struggled to connect the ball as they hit only two boundaries for lmost 12 overs in the middle stages of their innings. The Mumbai lad Shardul Thakur along with Stokes and Unadkat managed to choke runs as they won easily by a margin of 27 runs.
In the post match presentation, Kohli said, “It’s very important to find the winning formula. If we play like this, we don’t deserve to win. The last game, we fought hard. Today we let the game go away right in front of our eyes. We have a few things to address. We can’t think we can sweep sides away at home. One of the best catches that I have taken ever. Just reflexes. All the training drills go into that. Milne bowled really well, assessed conditions really nicely, just his second or third opportunity in the IPL. Guys coming in have to learn form that, they can’t play without intent, without fear. :Last year we had to win four out of four to qualify but that can’t happen every time. As professional cricketers, you’re playing for a franchise, you’re playing in front of a lot of people, we can’t keep doing this. Hopefully, we can turn things around and the players can take the responsibility”
The winning captain Smith had his own thoughts and said, “We were in a pretty good position at one point at 0 for 60. Then we lost our way in the middle, losing 5 for 3. But I thought Tiwary finished off well for us and I thought 160 was par on that wicket, it was slow and up and down. Bowling changes worked out well tonight, it’s nice when it works. Had a lot better energy and presence in the field today so it was nice to turn it around. We have some great characters and some really good players. Hopefully this is the start of a little run for us”
Ben Stokes won the Man of the Match award. After colleting the award the English allrounder said, “I think we assessed the way the wicket turned when we were batting. So we went into the bowling innings with a better understanding and we executed our bowling plans really really well.
“We tried to stay away from full deliveries because those were the ones that were hit. Then we slowed it up and hit hard on a good length which was the hardest to hit. I thought we were struggling with our total, but we did excellently with the ball.
“First few games didn’t go to play, we’ve got some quality bowlers, hoping to build on this. Stokes when asked about crowd, he said “[Great crowd here?] I think wherever you go when Dhoni‘s in your team is a home ground”, said Stokes.