RCB will face off against the Delhi Capitals in match 27 of this year’s IPL. Delhi come from an all-around performance against KKR as they performed exceedingly well in all departments to get them a win by a huge margin.
RCB walk into this fixture after a loss against CSK as they conceded 215 with no control over the ball in the last 10 overs conceding close to 155 runs in the last 10 overs alone which is concerning by any means.
With a top-order failure in the powerplay, RCB had done well to recover as they had dispatched the bad balls while limiting the dot balls by converting the 1s and 2s.
What will make RCB fans happier is that this effort was done by 2 youngsters against a top-class bowling attack.
Wankhede is where these 2 teams will lock their horns. A standard stadium for the Indian team and has seen a lot of IPL matches take place, teams will have a lot of data to work with regarding this venue. The curators have managed to keep a high grass covering to make sure the pitch holds on really well.
In the previous games, we have seen the ball grip and turn a lot which made it really hard for the batsmen to face the leg spinners but with enough pace on the surface, any full-length balls or short balls were easily put away.
The surface has been harder to bat on compared to the other venues. There is enough swing on offer that the new ball bowlers can exploit. Batsmen have struggled to use the powerplay efficiently and any team which has tried to take an aggressive route has lost a lot of wickets in the process. Teams batting first have looked for the boundaries more often than not and in the process have completely disregarded strike rotation.
Bowlers haven’t figured on what death overs to bowl as the pitch seems to get easier to play as the innings progress.
With both teams having very conventional bowlers, this will be a very interesting game for the viewers.
In-Depth Phase Wise Comparision
Powerplay → Faf and Anuj will be up against Khaleel and Mustafizur.
Both these bowlers are not bowlers who massively swing the ball but it’s about placing the ball in the right areas along with their left arm action that makes them a threat to batsmen.
Du Plessis has enjoyed playing at the Wankhede as he averages 40 with a healthy average of 131.
DC has managed to pick up at least a wicket in the powerplay so far and will be up against a duo who rarely give away their wicket in this period.
RCB have a more explosive batting lineup with Maxi and Suyash involved, so continuing their current approach is not viable in any way as they have one of the lowest averages in the powerplay this season.
Rawat has shown intent but only when his strike rate starts to fall while Du Plessis seems to look for a feel of the conditions for a very long time. With a struggle for the top 3 batsmen against Kuldeep and their other economical spinners, we will see a more aggressive approach.
What will be interesting to watch is if they can play in an aggressive manner while also keeping wickets in hand, having batsmen available in the back end is what has made RCB chase down or set up a huge target,
In my opinion, we will see Anuj Rawat play more of a Shaw-Esque role where he will look to go after any traditional deliveries which he has the capability to do while Faf will also look at a more aggressive route.
With wickets falling in the powerplay and Anuj who has been under pressure with Suyash performing, I strongly feel DC will walk away as winners with the ball in this phase.
Prithvi Shaw has been an absolute monster in the powerplay so far!!! The ability to read the line and lengths so quickly and play with so much freedom is something we rarely see.
What makes him really special is the fact that he doesn’t always need to swing his bat and hope the ball goes to the fence, he uses the field restrictions and more often than not plays shots with complete control.
With a strike rate of 152 and 162 against the RCB quicks, he will be the player to watch out for. In a Mumbai track that will help him, I cannot see a change in approach.
Warner has been among the runs with his loss in the last game but doesn’t seem like his old self. Whenever a player of his level gets to face so many balls, they often demolish the bowlers especially when they have bowlers but Warner has had to rely on innovative shots to get to his scores. Taking nothing away from the batsmen, but he hasn’t been his usual self.
With a tidy record against the pacers and a slow middle over RR, we will see Delhi continue an approach that has worked so far.
Middle overs → RCB have the best middle order in the league with the addition of other batsmen and Shahbaz’s spin hitting ability proving its worth once again.
Kohli, Maxi, Suyash and Shahbaz will be eager to come back on the field after the last game.
Shahbaz has been able to use the pace of the bowlers but his spin hitting ability wasn’t well known which was a concern as with DK waiting and him playing up the order he had to face a lot of spin.
Against CSK, not only did he play well against spin he didn’t take too many risks. He used any space given to him and minimized the number of dots.
Suyash is someone RCB have been impressed with over the past year or 2 and after finally starting his first game, he did nothing less than impressing the entire fanbase.
Powerful shots with a 360-degree range of hitting are what make him special.
The duo had a huge target against them and had managed to turn 1 into 2’s and never looked out of place which is something we very often see in youngsters.
Maxi has been on fire, with an amazing bbl season and a rocking start to the season where he took apart CSK’s bowling in the few balls that he had faced.
Maxwell will be up against Axar who has a trait that is quite similar to Jadeja and is causing Maxi some problems. The ball for both these bowlers seems to skid on more than others and when the ball does come straight off the arm and has no spin, the position maxi gets into makes it very hard for him to adapt.
Maxi vs Kuldeep has been a very volatile matchup. With only a small sample size of 14 balls, Maxi has hit 5 boundaries with the southpaw getting his wicket twice.
Kohli in Wankhede is enough to make him a threat. Having not been in great form he will be looking to score some runs and if RCB are fortunate enough to have a good powerplay it will make it more comfortable for him to express himself in the middle.
Despite having in-form Kuldeep the sheer depth and quality of the players will mean that RCB will look to score most of their runs in this phase of the innings.
Before I start talking about DC let me just put up a stat for you, DC HAS the LOWEST STRIKE RATE AGAINST SPIN AT 6.71.
Normally this would indicate the lack of quality or that the team looks at other phases to score but if only it was that simple.
Pant, Yadav and Powell in the middle overs just haven’t worked so far. Lalit’s batting position isn’t confirmed as he keeps moving.
Without undermining Lalit’s contribution but having a Lalit Yadav as your best middle-order batsman this season is a very big concern. Pant is struggling to rotate the strike and often has to take the risky route to ease the situation. Any overseas batsmen will struggle on a subcontinent pitch with quality spinners.
Having seen a more submissive Pant since his captaincy debut, Dc will need to rethink their strategy as they will be up against the spin trio of Hasaranga, Shahbaz and Maxwell.
Maxwell’s experience along with Shahbaz’s accuracy will make it hard for DC to score quick runs against these 2 who are expected to bowl a combined 4 overs. Hasaranga is getting better as time passes with no major change in his game plan which is a good thing as it shows optimum clarity.
With RCB leaking too many runs last time around, we can see them playing it a bit more safe and bowling lengths which don’t give too many runs forcing the initiative on the DC trio to score runs in this phase.
Death overs → Dc have some quality Indian batsmen to finish things off, something which I feel should be employed by all IPL teams.
With a feel for the conditions and some power, it will be an attack that RCB will have to be careful with.
Having failed so far, they will have a point to prove as they go up against an attack that has also failed so far.
Hazlewood, Siraj and Harshal will have to take care of these batsmen. With Siraj getting back in form along with Hazlewood who has continued to be as accurate as ever, RCB will look at this as a favourable matchup.
Having a lot of quality bowlers means that if the batting team ever loses sight of their initiative the result will not end well. DK continues to wreak havoc as he had a good cameo against CSK. With Harshal back they will be happy to have another capable player to assist these bowlers.
RCB will be happy to have Harshal the batsman back. With both him and Wanindu, DK will have more freedom to go after every ball and with an extra batsman, we will also see support.
DC has been really brave so far by bowling standard lengths and backing the bowler’s skill sets. With their bowling working out as an overall package it will be unfair to say that they have underperformed.
RCB → Harshal Patel and Glenn Maxwell
Harshal will be available for the game and I think he will be starting this one. With DC having a low strike rate against spin, they will look at Harshal as an option to get runs.
With a more stable death bowling, we could see Harshal more in the middle overs against a team that will be looking to get many runs in this phase.
Harshal now has a chance to both get lots of wickets while continuing to maintain his economy of 5.6 which makes him the best option to become your Dream XI captain.
Maxwell will always be important with his X-factor but even so now as he has to face Kuldeep.
With Kuldeep’s resurgence in this season’s IPL, batsmen will have a more conservative approach and in the off chance that someone gets a chance to hit him for a six, he comes back with an even better ball.
What has made Maxi special is his ability to continue hitting these shots even with the bowler improvising? Maxwell will be back after the CSK game where he hit very good CSK spinners away.
With Akash Deep set to be dropped for Harshal and the pitch griping on we might see him bowl and over or 2 with the ball.
DC → Kuldeep Yadav and Prithvi Shaw
With the ball gripping on and the chinaman being in top form, it is not an unexpected choice to be one of DC’s main players today.
With RCB playing an extra batsman, we will see at least 1 batsman go after the spinner and more often than not I feel we will see Kuldeep come out as the winner.
Shaw has been in top form as he absolutely demolishes any bowler in the powerplay. Reading the line and length faster and always having the exact idea of how much the ball bounces is a skill very few possess.
Having been given a license to go after the bowlers, he will try his best to repeat the same against RCB. This will be a very interesting clash as he is up against Siraj and Hazlewood.
These 2 pacers have been bowlers who have been very consistent with their staple lengths and so far have not shifted away from the plan but with Shaw going after these balls, I feel he will lose his wicket but not before he can land a few blows on the players.
If Hasaranga does bowl in the powerplay, he has been bowling bad lengths which would only increase the run rate.