Abu Dhabi: The first double-header of the competition, Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) will take on Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the match no 15 at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium here on Saturday.
RCB kicked off their campaign with a win against Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) but lost their second game of the season against Kings XI Punjab. RCB though managed to return to winning ways after they beat Mumbai Indians (MI) in a thrilling Super Over-finish in their third game.
Meanwhile, Rajasthan Royals got off to a dream start in IPL 2020 as they managed to win their first two matches despite conceding 200 runs to the opposition teams. However, the Royals suffered defeat in their last game against Kolkata Knight Riders.
Chasing a target of 175 runs, the Rajasthan Royals could only manage 137/9 thanks to Tom Curran’s half-century
Both the teams will now be seeking their third win of the season and there are a number of players who could play a decisive role in the outcome of the game.
While his six-hitting ability has not gone unnoticed this IPL season, RR will want Jofra Archer to have an encore of his performance against KKR.
The England speedster had hit the ground running against the Dinesh Karthik-led team and was RR’s most successful bowler in the match. If he comes good with the ball against the likes of Virat Kohli, Finch and ABD, RR will be in with a chance to seal their third win.
AB de Villiers is looking in the zone and that means it is a good sign for RCB. Mr 360 has scored two fifties in RCB’s three games and even during his 28-run knock against KXIP, he played some delectable strokes.
ABD is coming into this game on the back of his sensational 54*-run display against MI and he will be looking forward to continue his good run of form as RCB face RR.
After two stunning batting performances against CSK and KXIP, scoring 74 and 85 respectively, Sanju Samson could only score 8 against KKR.
However, he and RR would like to believe that the knock against KKR was just a blip. If Samson comes good with the bat like he did in the first two games, expect RR to score big.
In their previous game against MI, the Australian limited-overs skipper Aaron Finch set the tone for RCB with a quickfire fifty, and Finch will once again be expected to come good. If he fires at the top like he did against MI, it will lay a solid foundation for the likes of Virat Kohli and ABD.
While Finch and ABD will be the players to watch out for, RR will be aware that Virat will be eager to get the big runs. The RCB skipper has not had a big score as yet in the IPL 2020, but one of the best modern-day batsmen will be out to make a point and set things right.
Jos Buttler missed out on RR’s season opener as he was in the mandatory quarantine and could not score many in RR’s second game. While he got out in the 20s in the game against KKR, he looked in a good nick, hitting Narine down the ground and scooping Pat Cummins, before getting out. If Buttler fires at the top, RR are guaranteed to have another fine outing with the bat.
Virat Kohli needs 70 runs to complete 5,500 IPL runs. AB de Villiers needs 5 catches to complete 100 IPL catches. Jos Buttler needs 89 runs to complete 1,500 IPL runs and requires 116 runs to complete 1000 IPL runs for RR and Steve Smith requires 84 runs to complete 1,000 IPL runs as captain.