Hello and welcome to Sportstar's live coverage of today's Indian Premier League encounter between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Delhi Capitals at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
Axar Patel gets Delhi Capitals over the line with a boundary as Royal Challengers Bangalore slips to its sixth successive defeat of the season. Rabada's four-for restricted RCB under 150 and Prithvi Shaw and Shreyas Iyer dashed Bangalore's hopes of a comeback with a blazing start at the top. Iyer's fifty was the cornerstone of Delhi's win.
◘ Hang on! Do we have a twist in the tale? Rishabh Pant, too, perishes trying to clear the infield and Delhi is six down with three required off 10 balls.
◘ Shreyas Iyer departs after a well-crafted 67, Saini gets rid of him with a short ball. Morris follows suit, and suddenly Delhi has lost two wickets in quick succession. Chahal to bowl out. And he has cut one away for four. Iyer then smacks a six over long-off to take 13 off Chahal's third. DC needs six in 18 balls.
◘ Moeen Ali is back and Pant welcomes him with a boundary. Eight off that. Saini returns for another crack. Shreyas Iyer makes room and slashes at a wide ball, it races to Siraj at third-man but skids off the ground and Siraj has let that one slip through his hands for four. Delhi cruising at the moment. DC 131/3 after 16 overs.
◘ Meanwhile, Shreyas Iyer brings up his 50 with a brace. Ingram has been adjudged lbw off Moeen Ali. Pant is the new man in. Chahal is back for his third. Ingrams brings up the team 100 with a boundary and Iyer moves closer to his fifty with a boundary, a delectable cut off the backfoot to be precise. DC 114/3 after 14 overs. Delhi Capitals needs 36 runs in 36 balls.
◘ Moeen Ali bowls his second, goes for just two. Two balls later, Ingram hits a maximum square of the wicket and follows it up with a boundary to third-man. 14 off that over. The match is slipping away from RCB in double quick time. Negi to Shreyas Iyer, and he has been dropped, again. And Parthiv's the culprit, again. Tough chance but you ought to take those, especially if you are defending such modest totals. Delhi Capitals needs 56 runs in 54 balls. DC 96/2 after 12 overs.
◘ Iyer wraps up Moeen's first over with a cheeky boundary and a single. Moeen Ali will bowl his off-spin. Iyer, meanwhile, continues to milk the boundaries, an exquisite cut shot being the latest addition. Negi gets his man, Shaw is caught in the deep off a long hop. The youngster will be disappointed with himself but he has done his job, he falls for 28 off 22. Colin Ingram is the new man in. DC 80/2 after 10 overs.
◘ And he has been dismissed for yet another boundary by Iyer. He is looking in ominous touch, is the Delhi skipper. Seven coming off it. Siraj to bowl his first over. Pawan Negi to roll his arm now, strays down leg and Iyer gives it the treatment it deserves. Eight off it in the end. The partnership is now worth 60 off 40. DC 68/1 after 8 overs. Delhi Capitals needs 82 runs in 72 balls.
◘ Iyer has taken on RCB's best bowler, Chahal, and dispatched him for a maximum. That also brings up the team fifty. DC 53/1 after 6 overs.
◘ Saini returns for his second and this one's a far cry from his first over, concedes 12. Shaw, meanwhile, continues to make the most of the Powerplay. Iyer too is joining the fun. Yuzvendra Chahal has been introduced into the attack. Good start, just five off it. DC 47/1 after 5 overs.
◘ Make that
five back-to-back boundaries. Young Prithvi Shaw is taking apart the Kiwi international, one boundary at a time. Scratch that. The fifth one has been given a leg-bye.
DC collecting 20 off that third over. Southee has been
hammered for two consecutive boundaries by Shaw, the first one is an over-pitched delivery on the pads and is timed away through mid-wicket and the next one, a short ball dragged past the fine leg fielder for another boundary.
◘ Saini to bowl the second over. Saini is bowling quick here, the speed gun's clocking him in between 140-150 kmph. Excellent over from Saini, just two off it. DC 10/1 after 2 overs.
◘ DROPPED! that could have been a second wicket for Southee but Parthiv Patel puts Iyer down . An outside dge Shreyas Iyer comes to the crease. He gets off the mark with a boundary and a little help from Chahal in the field who should have stopped that one. Blinder from Navdeep Saini at point hands Shikhar Dhawan a golden duck . Just the start RCB was hoping for. Delhi has lost its first wicket. DC 1/1 after 0.3 overs
Prithvi Shaw and Shikhar Dhawan to get Delhi's chase underway, Tim Southee with the new ball.
Kagiso Rabada's four-for has restricted RCB to 149/8. Virat Kohli's 41 and Moeen Ali's 32 ensured Bangalore reached a modest total but some tight bowling by the Delhi ensured RCB never got its innings going. Delhi Capitals needs 150 to win.
◘ Chris Morris returns for the 19th. Siraj has been given out lbw and he has decided to review the umpire's call. Replays show no contact between bat and ball and that's plumb in front. RCB loses its eighth wicket.
◘ Three wickets in the over for Rabada, Negi too edges one to the keeper. RCB in tatters, Another one bites the dust. Akshdeep Nath is caught behind. Rabada has got three wickets now! Kohli perishes, trying to up the ante and Rabada ensures there's no VK special in the death overs. Virat Kohli is getting started, finally. Two back-to-back maximums off Lamichhane, both over deep mid-wicket as the Nepal leg-spinner concedes 19 off his last to return figures of one for 46. W 4 W 0 1 W - Rabada's third over.
◘ Akshdeep is not going to hang around, he has responded to three consecutive dots with a beautiful shot through deep extra-cover for four. Morris returns into the attack. Lamichhane gets the breakthrough, has Moeen Ali stumped just as he was starting to up the ante. Akshdeep Nath has joined Kohli in the middle. He opens his account with a cheeky boundary. RCB 114/4 after 16 overs.
◘ Beautiful placement from Moeen, he has somehow managed to squeeze a yorker for a boundary . Ishant is back and he has been dispatched for a six by Moeen , who is getting a move on now. Moeen Ali has launched Axar Patel over the cow corner for six! A much needed big hit for the host. Easier for left-handed Moeen to take on a left-arm spinner. 11 off it. RCB 97/3 after 14 overs.
◘ RCB dealing in singles at the moment, six ones in as many balls. Lamichhane to continue. Just three of his third over. Top stuff . GONE! Axar strikes and RCB has lost its third wicket, Stoinis holes out to Tewatia. Moeen Ali is the next man in. RCB 72/3 after 12 overs.
◘ WHAM! Lamichhane has been welcomed by Stoinis with a maximum over long-on. Leg-spinner Sandeep Lamichhane to bowl his first over. Axar is back. Six singles from his second over. RCB 63/2 after 10 overs.
And it's time for the strategic time-out!
◘ He is clocking speeds in excess of 150, is Rabada. That's some serious pace from the Protean seamer. Five coming off the eighth over. Rabada back for his second. Marcus Stoinis is the new man in. Left-arm spinner Axar Patel to roll his arm , gives away just two. RCB 47/2 after 8 overs.
◘ Rabada bowls a wide but the extra ball has earned him the prized scalp of AB De Villiers! It's the slower ball that has proved to be the undoing of AB. Massive wicket. He departs for 17. Two dots, three singles from Rabada so far. Kagiso Rabada has been introduced into the attack.AB scythes one through sweeper cover to ruin what was turning out to be a good over. 10 off it. Ishant back for his third. Both AB and VK are happy to run the ones and twos against Ishant. RCB 40/2 after 6 overs.
◘ AB survives a close call, hares across to the other end for a tight single and would have been run out had there been a direct hit! AB takes Morris to the cleaners, short but not short enough and AB has pulled this one over deep mid-wicket for six. Chris Morris to bowl his second. Good tight over from Ishant. Just two coming off it in the end. AB de Villiers comes to the crease. Ishant Sharma to continue. RCB 26/1 after 4 overs.
◘ GONE! Parthiv falls and RCB has lost an early wicket here, the diminutive keeper-batsman fails to get under a full delivery and ends up miscuing it straight to Lamichhane at third-man. Nearly gets his man! Perfect line and length from Morris, gets Kohli jabbing at the ball which just about evades the slip fielder — Dhawan is the lone slip — and runs away to the third-man fence for four. Chris Morris to share the new ball. Kohli on strike. Chants of 'Kohli, Kohli' reverberate through the stadium. RCB 16/1 after 2 overs.
◘ Parthiv gets off the mark with a brace before whipping one over deep mid-wicket for his first boundary. Six off the first over. He is getting good purchase off the wicket, is Ishant. Good bounce for Ishant straightaway, but it is short and outside off; Parthiv is happy to watch it go.
Virat Kohli and Parthiv Patel to open for RCB, Ishant Sharma with the new ball.
TOSS UPDATE| Shreyas Iyer has won the toss and Delhi Capitals will bowl first.
Royal Challengers Bangalore (Playing XI): Parthiv Patel(w), Virat Kohli(c), AB de Villiers, Marcus Stoinis, Moeen Ali, Akshdeep Nath, Pawan Negi, Tim Southee, Navdeep Saini, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammed Siraj
Delhi Capitals (Playing XI): Prithvi Shaw, Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer(c), Rishabh Pant(w), Rahul Tewatia, Colin Ingram, Chris Morris, Axar Patel, Kagiso Rabada, Ishant Sharma, Sandeep Lamichhane
PITCH REPORT| "Beautiful pitch to bat on like always, the ball comes on to the bat nicely. The average first-innings total is 189 and the team batting first has won four games while the team batting second has won five. If you bowl in the slot, the strike-rate is a staggering 203.4, but if you bowl length, the strike-rate drops to 136.9. This particular pitch looks full of runs," says Laxman Sivaramakrishnan.
After a brilliant 99 off 55 balls in Delhi's clash against KKR, pundits hope Prithvi Shaw 's fiery form spills over into the weeks of the ICC World Cup.
Will the Delhi Capitals star find a place in India's WC squad?| Prithvi Shaw: Not looking as far ahead as the World Cup
Prior to the match against Kolkata Knight Riders, Virat Kohli had 7983 runs from 256 matches at a strike rate of 133.24| Kohli brings up 8000 runs in T20 cricket
Prithvi Shaw has 141 runs from five matches at a strike-rate of 158.42, with a high score of 99. While his average of 27.57 belies the threat he poses at the top of the order, RCB leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal will be wary of the Under-19 World Cup winning captain.
FOLLOW: 2019 IPL FULL COVERAGE
Here's Anjana Senthil's preview of this afternoon's contest:
Delhi Capitals test for beleaguered Royal Challengers
The spate of defeat continues and Royal Challengers Bangalore now faces the unenviable task of having to win all the matches to stay in contention at the Indian Premier League ( IPL) , starting with the match against Delhi Capitals at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium on Sunday.
After five losses in as many games, to expect the team to effect a turnaround seems a little far-fetched to the point of being foolish even if one were an eternal optimist. Even skipper Virat Kohli has put his hands up, stating the team deserves its place in the bottom of the table for the kind of performance it has been churning out.
Even if the batting clicks, like it did against Kolkata Knight Riders on Friday when AB de Villiers and Kohli were on song, no amount of runs on the board is going to guarantee the Royal Challengers any success unless it improves its bowling and fielding.
The team’s seam bowling has been insipid and uninspiring in a dumbfounding manner, yorkers a missing entity in the bowlers’ arsenal in the death overs. The catching has been poor; there have been as many as eight dropped catches in just the last two games!
The team finally rested the underperforming Shimron Hetmyer and brought in pacer Tim Southee for the match against Knight Riders, but he bore the brunt of the Russell rampage in the previous match and was quite ineffective even otherwise.
Despite all the struggles in the bowling department, it has been surprising to see Washington Sundar still warming the bench while the likes of Akshdeep Nath are being given a chance. Considering Delhi boasts of a top-heavy line-up dominated by Indians, it remains to be seen if Royal Challengers will try out the Tamil Nadu spinner or go for yet another trial of a medium pacer for change in fortunes. The team didn’t even go for the spin option of Moeen Ali in the previous match, so Washington may have to wait it out longer. Pawan Negi was effective and is likely to retain his place in the squad.
Delhi Capitals, Royal Challengers’ opponent, started with a resounding win against Mumbai Indians, but has since stuttered about with inconsistent shows for a tally of two wins and three losses. Rishabh Pant has a century under his belt, Prithvi Shaw a 99 in the match against Knight Riders; Shikhar Dhawan and Shreyas Iyer have also contributed handsomely on various occasions.
It is a certainty that the Sunday’s match will also be a high-scoring affair, unless the curators go for a freshly rolled pitch that has a wee bit more grass than the pitch that has been in use in the last two matches at the Chinnaswamy stadium. There were enough indications of that being a possibility with the Karnataka State Cricket Association members, curator and groundsmen actively measuring, watering and assessing the adjacent pitch.
In terms of bowling, Capitals poses its faith in South Africa’s Kagiso Rabada and Ishant Sharma in the pace department. Rabada managed to restrict Knight Riders for seven runs in the Super Over for a morale-boosting win. Ishant, too, has been among wickets. Axar Patel and Nepal’s Sandeep Lamichchane offer variety in the spin department and Capitals certainly looks like the more balanced side.
Royal Challengers was slotted for optional practice on Saturday, but most of the players were in attendance at the nets. The team cannot rest; it is chasing the improbable now.