Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) showed no mercy as they thrashed Kolkata Knight Riders by 82 runs here at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Monday.
No KKR batsmen got going as RCB restricted the Dinesh Karthik-led side to 112/9 in their allotted 20 overs on the back of some all-round bowling performance. Yuzvendra Chahal picked a wicket and gave away just 12 runs from his four overs. Washington Sundar and Chris Morris bowled brilliantly and picked two wickets each.
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Chasing 194 runs, KKR got off to a moderate start as the openers Tom Banton and Shubman Gill stitched a 23-run stand for the first wicket. Navdeep Saini bowled Banton in the fourth over to hand RCB their first breakthrough of the day.
Nitish Rana then joined Gill in the middle but the former played a very sluggish knock. A slow start and dismissal of both Rana and Gill in the eight and tenth over respectively dented KKR hope of winning the match.
The wicket of Gill triggered a middle-order collapse as KKR lost four wickets for 13 runs. First Dinesh Karthik and then Eoin Morgan wicket in the 12th over left KKR reeling for 64/5 with 131 still needed in 53 balls.
A cameo from Andre Russell in the 14th over provided a ray of hope but Isuru Udana dismissed the swashbuckling batsman to end KKR’s hope. Wicket kept falling at regular intervals as KKR got reduced to 99/8 and the target became a distant dream for the Karthik-led side. In the end, RCB restricted KKR to 112/9.
Earlier after opting to bat first, RCB posted a massive total of 194 runs on the back of AB de Villiers blistering knock. De Villers played an unbeaten knock of 73 runs from just 33 balls while skipper Virat Kohli scored an unbeaten 33.
RCB had got off to a good start as openers Devdutt Padikkal and Aaron Finch struck regular boundaries. Both played brilliantly and took the team over the 50-run mark in the seventh over.
The duo formed a 67-run partnership before Andre Russell bowled Padikkal (32) in the eighth over. Finch too was then bowled in the 13th over which ended the batsman’s 47-run innings.
Kohli and de Villiers then came out to bat. De Villiers started playing with an attacking mindset and smashed KKR bowlers. Continuing his aggressive batting, de Villiers completed his half-century in just 23 deliveries.
KKR bowlers struggled to stop de Villiers from hitting big shots as the player powered RCB to a very competitive total. During the match, Kohli and de Villiers formed a 100-run partnership.
Brief scores: RCB 194/2 [AB de Villiers 73* (33), Aaron Finch 47 (37), Prasidh Krishna 1-42] defeat KKR 112/9 [Shubman Gill 34(25), Andre Russell 16(10), Chris Morris 2-17, Washington Sundar 2-20]