A blistering half-century by chase master Virat Kohli guided Royal Challengers Bangalore to a convincing 8 wickets win against table-toppers in their IPL 2022 match at Wankhede Stadium here on Thursday.
With this victory in the must-win encounter, RCB leapfrogged Delhi Capitals for the fourth spot on the Indian Premier League 2022 table with 16 points against their name. Royal Challengers still need Delhi Capitals, who have a superior net run rate than them, to lose their final league fixture to Mumbai Indians, to enter into playoffs.
Virat Kohli finally broke out of the funk, with 73 off 54 balls, his highest score this IPL. Skipper Faf Du Plessis scored 44 off 38 balls while Glenn Maxwell finished with a quick 40 off 18 balls.
Batting first, a blistering half-century by Hardik Pandya and quick 34 by David Miller steered Gujarat Titans to a challenging 168/5 against Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Pandya smashed 62 runs off 47 balls while Miller played a brilliant quick knock of 34 runs off 25 balls. For RCB, Josh Hazlewood scalped two wickets while Wanindu Hasaranga settled for one.
Chasing 169, RCB openers Virat Kohli and Faf Du Plessis enjoyed a good start as their score read 55/0 after the powerplay in the match.
The RCB duo continued with their carnage as their score read 93/0 at halfway mark in the chase. The 100-run partnership was up between Virat and Faf in the 12th over.
Faf du Plessis simply rode in Kohli’s slipstream during a 115-run opening stand before holing out for 44 off 38 balls in the 15th over. Rashid also got rid of Kohli, in his next over, but the game was all but over by then.
Glenn Maxwell then came out all guns blazing and put up a show of his own as finished with 40 off 18 balls.
Earlier, opting to bat first, Gujarat Titans got off to a great start as openers Wriddhiman Saha and Shubman Gill trashed Siddarth Kaul for 14 runs in the first over of the innings.
In the third over, Josh Hazlewood gave a big blow to GT as he dismissed star batter Shubman Gill when he had barely scored a run.
Glenn Maxwell gave another blow as he removed Matthew Wade with GT at 38. GT lost the third wicket at 62 as Wriddhiman Saha was sent to the pavilion.
David Miller then came to the crease and tried to anchor Gujarat’s innings with skipper Hardik Pandya. Gujarat Titans were at 72/3 after ten overs as the Banglore bowlers kept a check on the flow of runs through tight bowling.
Miller and Pandya took their team’s total beyond the 100-run mark in the 14th over as they trashed Maxwell for 18 runs. As they hammered RCB bowlers, Siddarth Kaul came up with a tight 16th over which conceded only four runs.
The partnership between Miller and Pandya took GT to 118-3 after the 15th over. RCB heaved a sigh of relief as Wanindu Hasaranga removed Miller after he had scored 34 leaving GT at 123/4.
Rahul Tewatia then joined GT skipper to post a respectable total against RCB in the last three overs. But Tewatia could not do much as he was sent back to the pavilion by Hazlewood after scoring two runs.
Rashid Khan came to bat with the skipper. In the 19th over of the innings, Pandya brought up his half-century which came from 42 balls. In the last over, the batters thrashed Hazlewood for 17 runs to take GT’s total to 168/5 in 20 overs.
Brief scores: Gujarat Titans 168/5 (Hardik Pandya 62*, David Miller 34; Josh Hazlewood 2-39) vs Royal Challengers Bangalore 170/2 (Virat Kohli 73, Faf Du Plessis 44; Rashid Khan 2-32)