Virat Kohli’s Royal Challengers Bangalore will face a confident SunRisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League on Wednesday, looking to consolidate their place after a winning start. The David Warner-led SRH lost to Kolkata Knight Riders in their tournament opener, while RCB started their campaign with a morale-boosting victory over five-time reigning champions Mumbai Indians at the same venue. After a strong showing in the first game, RCB will be bolstered even more when the very talented Devdutt Padikkal returns after recovering from COVID-19.
Padikkal has stated that he is now fully prepared to participate in the IPL and is assured that he will be able to replicate his stellar domestic form in the ongoing competition. On March 22, he contracted the lethal virus and was put in hospital, but he has since recovered and returned to work with his RCB teammates.
If Padikkal is unable to play on Wednesday, RCB will stick with Kohli and Washington Sundar in the opening pair.
In the coming matches, RCB will field Mohammed Azharuddeen and Australian leg-spinner Adam Zampa. In the batting order, Kohli and the incomparable AB de Villiers will be central, with Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell looking to make a significant contribution with the willow.
He looks fine in his first game for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, and he has the support of the team’s management, including skipper Virat Kohli. RCB’s batting looks thin outside of Kohli, de Villiers, and Maxwell, which is why Padikkal’s presence at the top is crucial. With 473 runs from 15 matches in IPL 2020, the 20-year-old Karnataka left-hander was RCB’s leading run-getter, with five half-centuries in his debut season.
Padikkal continued his excellent form in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy (218 runs at 43.60 in six matches) and Vijay Hazare Trophy (737 runs in seven matches). Rajat Patidat and Washington would like to make amends for their loss in the opener against SRH.
RCB’s bowlers were nearly all economical in the face of MI’s formidable bowling, with medium pacer Harshal Patel taking 5/27. They’ll almost definitely ask for a repeat performance. In terms of SRH, both openers Wriddhiman Saha and Warner struggled to get going against KKR in the first game and will be looking to make amends against RCB.
Warner, the swashbuckling batsman, has nearly 600 runs against RCB and will look to add to the remarkable total. SRH have the option of reuniting Warner with Jonny Bairstow, who scored a half-century when batting in the middle order against KKR alongside Manish Pandey, who scored 44 off 44 balls.
Kane Williamson is unlikely to play on Wednesday, according to coach Trevor Bayliss, who said that the Kiwi will need some time to get back to full match fitness. Bhuvneshwar Kumar scored runs against KKR, but the veteran seamer is required to regain his groove quickly.
Royal Challengers Bangalore:
Virat Kohli (c), Devdutt Padikkal, Finn Allen (wk), AB de Villiers (wk), Pavan Deshpande, Washington Sundar, Daniel Sams, Yuzvendra Chahal, Adam Zampa, Shahbaz Ahmed, Mohammed Siraj, Navdeep Saini, Kane Richardson, Harshal Patel, Glenn Maxwell, Sachin Baby, Rajat Patidar, Mohammed Azharuddeen, Kyle Jamieson, Daniel Christian, Suyash Prabhudessai, K.S. Bharat
David Warner (c), Kane Williamson, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Manish Pandey, Sreevats Goswami (wk), Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Priyam Garg, Vijay Shankar, Abhishek Sharma, Abdul Samad, Virat Singh, Mitchell Marsh, Jason Holder, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Shahbaz Nadeem, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, T. Natarajan, Sandeep Sharma, Khaleel Ahmed, Siddarth Kaul, Basil Thampi, Jagadeesha Suchith, Kedar Jadhav, Mujeeb-ur-Rahman.