Gambhir will not be happy with this — two free-hits in this over! Only one of the free-hit ball is converted into a boundary — it was wide and bowled at 144 kmph. All Watson had to do was connect that one — poor bowling, this. He’s been spraying them all over the wicket — just what RCB want. Wow! Baby’s cashing in on the wayward bowling — two fours and a six to end this over. With this over, RCB have pushed the run rate past 8.
RCB 131/4 after 17 overs (Sachin Baby 0*, Shane Watson 14*)
Out! Kohli perishes now, looking to up the scoring rate. He’s gone for 52 runs — Morkel bowls a wide one and Kohli, who’s trying to smash that over covers, only manages to get the outside half of the bat and as a result, there’s no distance on that one. Sachin Baby’s here.
RCB: 125/3 after 16 overs (V. Kohli 49*, Shane Watson 12*)
Narine to bowl his last over. Watson likes the pace — thumps one over the midwicket region for a six. And follows that with a boundary — a low full toss and that’s exactly what Watto was looking for. Good over, this but RCB need more of this. The run rate’s 7.81.
RCB 112/3 at the end of 15 overs (V. Kohli 47*, Shane Watson 1*)
Morkel’s to bowl his third — he’ll look to get Watson early. And the pressure’s on Watson already. Only three runs came off this over — Morkel’s bowling a tight lines here and there’s absolutely no width on offer. With that, the run rate’s dipped below 7.5.
RCB: 109/3 after 14 overs (V. Kohli 45*, Shane Watson 0*)
Another big wicket, this time it’s AB. Chawla fires a quick one and AB fails to pick that one and gets trapped lbw. An easy decision for the umpire to make — that’s heading towards the middle of middle stump! Watto replaces AB.
Now, Kohli’s on the charge. He’s picking them from outside off and smashing them through the packed midwicket region. The ball’s racing off Kohli’s willow here. RCB 106/2 after 13 overs
RCB 97/2 after 12 overs (V. Kohli 34*, A.B. de Villiers 3*)
This is was bound to happen at some stage — Rahul mistimes one that is bowled wide and full. He tries to drive that one but only manages to slice it to the deep point fielder. He’s gone for 52 and also notched up a hat-trick of 50s! AB’s the next man in.
RCB 92/1 after 11 overs (V. Kohli 32*, K.L. Rahul 52*)
Another fifty for the Karnataka batsman here. He’s going after every bowler now; a four and a six off the first two balls. Another healthy over for RCB. Run rate’s over 8 now.
RCB 79/1 at the halfway mark (V. Kohli 31*, K.L. Rahul 40*)
It’s obvious Rahul’s been to lead the charge here and leggie Chawla will be hoping that the batsmen mistime one in the process.
He’s effortlessly lofts one over the ropes — pure timing that one. And he follows that six with a boundary — great improvisation from Rahul. He’s looking to sweep that one but changes his mind at the last moment — cuts its late for a four.
RCB 64/1 after nine overs (V. Kohli 28*, K.L. Rahul 28*)
Yadav to bowl his second. A super over from the Indian pacer, he’s given away only four runs this over. And more importantly, it comes at at time when RCB’s looking to increase the pace of scoring.
RCB 60/1 after eight overs (V. Kohli 26*, K.L. Rahul 26*)
Another bowling change and it’s KKR’s go to man, Piyush Chawla to bowl. There’s an definite attempt at upping the tempo here — it’s been the pattern in the last few overs. A boundary and singles or doubles off the other deliveries. A backfoot cut-boundary and a couple of singles and a double off this one. The run rate’s climbing all the time — 7.5 now.
RCB: 51/1 (7.28) after seven overs; V. Kohli 18*, K.L. Rahul 25*
More pace here, Yadav’s into the attack. Another good over for RCB, eleven coming off this one. Kohli’s playing a quiet knock here, Rahul’s been the man who’s taken the risks and going after runs. Maybe that’s the plan for RCB.
RCB: 40/1 at the end of powerplay overs
Sunil Narine’s introduced inside the first six over and he’s greeted with two boundaries. They’re sensing an oppourtunity to score some easy runs here — there’s no turn on offer and the short boundaries aren’t helping him either. Ten came off Narine’s first.
The bowlers are making it hard for RCB to score; RCB: 30/1 after five overs
Russell to bowl his third. He’s not just bowling them at good pace but also changing his lengths — one got even Kolhi ducking for cover! Just five off this one. Russell’s got excellent bowling figures — he’s conceded only 11 off his three overs.
RCB 25/1 after four overs
Rahul’s continuing from where he left last match, pulls a pacy delivery easily in front of midwicket, for a boundary.They’re bowling tight lines here and but these two are easily negotiating them. RCB get a move on – the two have managed to get 10 off this one. Not a bad over at all, but these two are making it look easy.
RCB off to slow start, 15/1 after three overs
Russell to continue. He’s generating some serious pace here — bowling in the mid-140s. Only three singles came off this one.
Morkel gets Gayle! RCB: 11/1 after two overs
No Gaylestorm today! Morne Morkel gets the Jamaican with a sharp bouncer that climbs too high on him. Gayle (7 off 7 balls) tries to smash that one but ends top-edging it to the ‘keeper. A big, big wicket, this one. Gayle had smashed the previous one for a 77-m six. Kohli is the next man
RCB: 2/0 after the first over
Skipper Virat Kohli is not opening today — it’s going to be Chris Gayle and K.L. Rahul. And they’ll have to face Andre Russell. He’s getting some shape on the ball and moving them at good pace too! Gayle’s finding it difficult to negotiate them — good contest, this. A terrific first over from Russell, only two off this.
The final playing XI
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Chris Gayle, Virat Kohli (captain), AB de Villiers, Shane Watson, Sachin Baby, Stuart Binny, K.L. Rahul, Varun Aaron, S Aravind, YS Chahal, T Shamsi
Kolkata Knight Riders
Gautam Gambhir (captain), Robin Uthappa, Manish Pandey, Suryakumar Yadav, Yusuf Pathan, Chris Lynn, Andre Russell, Piyush Chawla, Umesh Yadav, Sunil Narine, Morne Morkel
Kolkata Knight Riders’ captain Gautam Gambhir wins the toss and his team will bowl first.
Our match preview: RCB battles bowling concerns as it takes on KKR
It has been a difficult fortnight for Royal Challengers Bangalore. Four games away from home have produced one win, leaving the team with four points from six. All along, the bowling has caused Virat Kohli headaches.
After failing to defend 191, 170 and 180, RCB batted second for the first time this IPL season on Saturday, but conceded too many runs to chase. Not one of the 12 bowlers used so far this season averages under eight runs an over; five of them have gone at over 10.