After all the chaos and delay, IPL phase 2 had an exciting start as CSK defeated MI by 20 runs. The next fixture of 2nd phase will be played between two arch-rivals RCB and KKR.
RCB will be looking to carry on the momentum and solidify their positions in the top 4, whereas KKR who had a horrendous start earlier this year will be looking for a fresh start.
Due to injury, RCB’s Washington Sundar has been ruled out of phase 2, as Daniel Sams, Adam Zampa, and Kane Richardson have opted out. Wanindu Hasaranga and Dushmantha Chameera were among the top phase 2 replacements for RCB.
Pat Cummins has opted out of the UAE leg for KKR. Tim Southee has taken his place in the squad.
Virat Kohli – the last captaincy run at RCB
After IPL 2021, Virat Kohli will stand down as the captain of Royal Challengers Bangalore. Kohli declared earlier this week that he will step down as India’s T20 captain after the next T20 World Cup in the UAE. Kohli’s approach to phase 2 of the IPL will be interesting to see, as his team presently sits in a comfortable third place and is among the top contenders for the trophy.
KKR vs RCB – A battle of two titans
KKR made a dismal start to the season, losing five of their first seven games, and currently stands in seventh place. This break in the middle of two phases will aid them in recognizing their errors and making a strong comeback. RCB, on the other hand, has only lost two games and is currently in third place. RCB and KKR have one of the most intense rivalries in the IPL, with KKR presently leading by one game.
Yuzi Chahal – a chance for redemption
Yuzvender Chahal of the Royal Challengers Bangalore was one of the most shocking absences from the Indian World Cup lineup. He will be trying to make a comeback in the IPL 2nd phase, after a poor start to the season in which he only managed to take four wickets in seven matches. Chahal is RCB’s and India’s leading wicket-taker, and he will be crucial on the UAE’s turning wickets.
Key players to look out for…
Hasarnaga, the RCB’s newest signing, will be one of the crucial players to watch in the match. The Sri Lankan all-rounder was excellent against India in the recently finished T20I series, making him the most talked-about signing for RCB thus far. Hasaranga took seven wickets and scored 29 runs in three T20Is against India, enticing RCB to sign him before the start of the IPL 2021 UAE leg.
Expected playing 11
Virat Kohli (c), Devdutt Padikkal, Rajat Patidar, Glenn Maxwell, AB de Villiers (wk), Shahbaz Ahmed, Wanindu Hasaranga, Kyle Jamieson, Harshal Patel, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal.
Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Sunil Narine, Eoin Morgan (c), Andre Russell, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Lockie Ferguson, Shivam MavI, Prasidh Krishna, Varun Chakravarthy.