Raipur, May 21: Stage is set for a virtual knockout as a rampaging Royal Challengers Bangalore, led by inspirational skipper Virat Kohli, lock horns with an inconsistent Delhi Daredevils in their final IPL Twenty20 cricket match, here tomorrow.
After 13 matches, RCB are at the third spot with 14 points, while Delhi have as many points but are placed sixth in the table, lagging behind RCB only in net run-rate.
In fact, two-time champions Kolkata Knight Riders and Mumbai Indians too have 14 points each with just one match to go in their league stage.
With a hattrick of wins, Bangalore have been on a roll with skipper Kohli enjoying one of the best phases of his career as he has four centuries under his belt. He is the only batsman to score more than 800 runs in a single edition and has 865 runs from 13 matches thus far.
Despite sustaining a split webbing in his left hand while fielding against Kolkata Knight Riders, Kohli has shown no signs of relenting.
His teammates AB de villiers and Chris Gayle also dished out some sizzling batting display as RCB’s much vaunted batting line-up gave nightmares to their opposition by rattling up three of the four 200-plus totals this season.
In bowling department, spin-pace duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Shane Watson have served Bangalore well with 16 wickets each so far in the season.
On the other hand, Delhi, after back-to-back losses, notched up a last-ball six-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad last night to keep their Play-off hopes alive.
Zaheer Khan’s men have been inconsistent but they still somehow managed to keep themselves in contention and will hope to pull the rug from under the feet of RCB one more time like they did on April 17.
Delhi’s batting has revolved much around Quinton de Kock, who has been the most consistent batsman for them. Karun Nair and Sanju Samson too have contributed and team’s fortunes would depend on them.
Other domestic players like Mayank Agarwal, Shreyas Iyer, Rishab Pant and Pawan Negi have been inconsistent and mentor Rahul Dravid has his task cut out to spur them up. (PTI)