Royal Challengers Bangalore have inched further closer to the playoff spot with a comprehensive 8-wicket win over Kolkata Knight Riders on Wednesday. The win was RCB’s seventh in ten games and took them to the second spot.
Chasing a modest 85, RCB crossed the finishing line with ease in the 14th over while losing just two wickets. Opener Devdutt Padikkal and Aaron Finch set the platform for the easy win by adding 46 runs for the first wicket before both departed in the seventh over. Virat Kohli and Gurkeerat Mann then shared an unbeaten 39-run stand to take the team home.
Earlier in the match, RCB restricted KKR to a paltry total of 84 for 8 in 20 overs. Eoin Morgan’s decision to bat first was completely proven wrong by RCB bowlers as they reduced KKR to 14 for 4 inside four overs.
In the second over, Mohammed Siraj sent back to Rahul Tripathi and Nitish Rana on consecutive deliveries while bowling a maiden. In the third over, Navdeep Saini sent back Shubman Gill before Siraj struck again in the fourth over to remove Tom Banton and reduce KKR to 14 for 4.
The two-time champions kept losing wickets at regular intervals and consequently, never got the impetus during their inning. Eoin Morgan top-scored for his side, scoring 30 off 34 balls while Lockie Ferguson’s unbeaten 19 was the second highest score.
Virat Kohli’s reactions:
Speaking at the end of the match, Virat Kohli started by revealing that he was initially thinking of giving the second over to Washington Sundar instead of Siraj. Virat Kohli also took a shot at the critics, saying that while ‘lot of people’ don’t have belief in RCB, the players have. The skipper concluded by lauding allrounder Chris Morris.
“It was a late call to be honest (to give Siraj the new ball). Was thinking of giving Washy. I obviously have thought about the things we can do on the field. Management have brought in a proper culture. We have plan A, we have plan B, and people are executing it that’s why it’s looking good,” he said.
“Don’t think lot of people have belief in RCB. Guys in the changeroom do and that’s all that matters. Can have the best players in the world but if you don’t have the belief it’s no good. Morris is loving the responsibility. He likes to be in a leadership role in the team. Even against Kings, he tried to york Gayle. His energy is amazing. A great, great addition to our squad. Last year he had a tough year. Lot of people went hard at him. But he worked hard. He’s seeing the result now and we want him to continue,” added Virat Kohli.