Third-placed Royal Challenger Bangalore (RCB) will face Punjab Kings (PBKS) in match number 48 of IPL 2021 in Sharjah on Sunday. The high-octane clash will feature the biggest names of the 2021 IPL including Virat Kohli, KL Rahul, Glenn Maxwell, AB de Villiers and Devdutt Padikkal.
Virat Kohli scores over 28.5 runs @ 2.78
Virat Kohli has been through a lot in the past two weeks. The 32-year-old first announced his decision to leave his T20I captaincy in India after the T20 World Cup and later called for the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) captain’s armband to be relinquished after the 2021 IPL. did not have a good start to the IPL 2021 UAE leg and he was fired for 5 by Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) pacer Prasidh Krishna.
Since the game against KKR, however, he is doing better. The reckless batsman, who has not scored a hundred in professional cricket (all formats) since April 2019, came back into the groove after hitting back-to-back fifties against three-time champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and defending champions Mumbai Indians ( MI). The Delhi boy had a sensational touch against Rohit Sharma’s team and also scored a no-look six on his 42-ball 51.
On Wednesday, he was looking for another fifty, but was undone by a brilliant Riyan Parag throw. Kohli scored 20-ball 25 as his team won the match by 7 wickets. Overall, the India captain has racked up 716 runs at an average of 29.83. He has a hundred, two fifties and seven scores of 30 plus against the Kings. In the Indian leg of the 2021 IPL, Kohli hit 35 out of 34 against the KL Rahul-led team. Mohammed Shami and Arshdeep Singh have bowled well, scalping 15 and 16 wickets respectively, but the duo will have to be wary of threats from Kohli, who seems in the mood to make a statement.
KL Rahul scores over 27.5 runs @ 1.89
The Punjab Kings (PBKS) batter was the winner of Orange Cap in IPL 2020 and again leads the run chart with 489 runs in 11 games so far. During the UAE stage of IPL 2021, KL Rahul scored 49, 21 and 21 runs respectively and 67 against Rajasthan Royals, Sunrisers Hydarabad, Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders respectively. The 29-year-old will do whatever it takes to make it big against CSK, who are very confident after becoming the first team to qualify for the play-offs. Punjab is in the bottom half of the points list and looking forward to a spot in the play-offs – and that could be another motivating factor for the skipper.
In the face-off, the burly right-wing batsman will take on the likes of Navdeep Saini and Yuzvendra Chahal — his two teammates from India who have bowled to him in the nets a lot. The match between current Purple Cap holder Harshal Patel and Rahul is expected to be an exciting one.
KL Rahul has a great track record against his former team. With a score of 412 runs in 7 matches, the wicketkeeper batsman, who scored an average of 103 against Kohli’s men. KL Rahul has scored a hundred, two fifties (including 57-ball 91 in the Indian leg of IPL 2021) and two over thirtys against Bangalore.
Glenn Maxwell scores over 20.5 runs @1.89
After KL Rahul, Glenn Maxwell will take on his former team Punjab Kings (PBKS). The hard hitting Australian batsman managed just 108 runs for the franchise in 13 games of IPL 2020. He averaged 15.42 and was unable to hit a single six.
As expected, Maxwell was released by PBKS ahead of the IPL 2021 auction and was bought by RCB for a whopping Rs 14.25 crore. In the presence of Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers, the 32-year-old flourished and scored 350 runs in 10 innings. Aside from an average of 38.88 and a pass rate of 141.70, Maxwell has reached 4 fifties. Not to mention, Maxwell has let the ball sail over the boundary rope 15 times this time.
In a day game and on a batting-friendly surface from Sharjah, Maxwell is expected to thrive again.
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