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AB de Villiers Delivers to Make Royal Challengers Bangalore Register 4-wicket Win on Gujarat Lions; Iqbal Abdulla Shines too

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AB de Villiers Delivers to Make Royal Challengers Bangalore Register 4-wicket Win on Gujarat Lions; Iqbal Abdulla Shines too

May 25
16:57 2016

devilliersNew Delhi, Wednesday, May 25 – At M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru, one of the crucial contests of the Indian Premier League was scheduled to take place that was supposed to give a team a berth in the Grand Finale. Gujarat Lions and Royal Challengers Bangalore were set to put best foot forward required to reach at a place where all participants of IPL 2016 were keen to mark their entry.

Gujarat Lions squad was led by Suresh Raina. The team was strong in all terms having Aaron Finch, Brendon McCullum, Dinesh Karthik, Dwayne Smith, Ravindra Jadeja, Dwayne Bravo, Eklavya Dwivedi, Praveen Kumar, Shadab Jakati and Dhawal Kulkarni. Royal Challengers Bangalore Playing XI, at the same time, were equally robust in different terms having Chris Gayle, Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Lokesh Rahul, Shane Watson, Stuart Binny, Sachin Baby, Chris Jordan, Sreenath Aravind, Iqbal Abdulla and Yuzvendra Chahal.

Those who sat on bench from GL side were Pradeep Sangwan, Paras Dogra, Sarabjit Ladda, James Faulkner, Jaydev Shah, Dale Steyn, Andrew Tye, Pravin Tambe, Akshdeep Nath, Umang Sharma, Amit Mishra, Ishan Kishan and Shivil Kaushik. On the other hand, Vikramjeet Malik, Abu Nechim, Kane Richardson, Kedar Jadhav, Harshal Patel, Mandeep Singh, Vikas Tokas, Travis Head, David Wiese, Varun Aaron, Akshay Karnewar, Sarfaraz Khan, Praveen Dubey, Tabraiz Shamsi and Parvez Rasool were in extras from RCB team. To perform in front of home crowd is not easy for a team, especially in cricket where things might change in a delivery. Royal Challengers Bangalore elected to bowl first after winning the toss. Decision of RCB skipper Kohli took several fans by surprise since the team was studded with players who can change the game alone by playing some astonishing knocks. With the seating capacity of 40,000, the Bengaluru stadium was fully packed with the cricket lovers who were enthusiastic to miss not even a bit of the great action from RCB vs. GL match.

Gujarat Lions felt some pressure in playing the shots that could have accumulated runs in speed. This was thanks to the quickness shown by Royal Challengers Bangalore’s fielders. Aaron Finch and Brendon McCullum, the openers who house the potential and courage to give their squad a wonderful start, were out at the scores of 4  and 1, respectively, after Abdulla was called to bowl his first over. Two dismissals in one over instantly put pressure on the guest. Stress mounted when Suresh Raina did not read a delivery by Watson and threw his wicket at a score of 1. Aravind showed swiftness in grabbing the ball and giving Gujarat Lions. Dinesh Karthik tried his best to make the team get some ground. Despite the fact that his 26-run knock off 30 balls, together with a couple of sixes, wasn’t impressive enough but this was needed to let GL feel themselves in the game.

It was Dwayne Smith who made Raina-led side heave a sigh of relief. When wicket keeper Karthik was dismissed by Jordon, 94 runs were there on the scoreboard that was giving a sight that considerable total can be put in front of the rivals and defended as well while bowling. Ravindra Jadeja’s stint was short for the reason that Watson got his wicket when he was playing at a score of 3. Smith was out in the next over. Nevertheless, before Chahal earned his crucial wicket, the middle-order batsman scored 73 runs off 41 deliveries. Five fours and six biggies were the highlights of his play. Tail-ender batsmen couldn’t do much as well for the team. Dwayne Bravo was sent back to the dressing room after pocketing eight runs. He confidentially hit a four but soon lost his wicket when Watson was brought back on attack.

Eklavya Dwivedi was certainly successful in taking the score of GL a little bit up than expected by hitting two massive sixes and a boundary. Prior being dismissed by Watson, the 27-year-old right-handed batsman played a knock of 19 runs in 9 balls. Praveen Kumar succumbed to Jordan post opening his account. Dhawal Kulkarni was run out by joint efforts of Sachin Baby and Rahul in an attempt to convert single into a two on the final ball. 10 runs from him came in just 4 balls and that consisted of two 4s also. Shadab Jakati was not out at 1 run. If truth be told then the kind of play presented by Gujarat Lions against RCB in the highly important match was not up to the mark, knowing the fact that Royal Challengers Bangalore are full of talented players.

Gujarat Lions scored 158 runs in 20 overs. 11 extras were given by RCB bowling lineup, which comprised Sreenath Aravind, Iqbal Abdulla, Shane Watson, Chris Jordan, Yuzvendra Chahal and Stuart Binny. In the mandatory powerplay, only 23 runs came. Gujarat Lions managed to get a total that made RCB feel a little bit stress soon after their batting innings started. Getting Virat Kohli out for a duck was a big success for Kulkarni, who also took wicket of dangerous opener Chris Gayle at 9 runs in his next over. Losing two big wickets without adding any substantial run was a sheer shock for RCB who were thinking of an easy chase. AB de Villiers was eying a partnership but wickets continued to fall from other end.

Both Lokesh Rahul and Sachin Baby were sent back to the dressing room at a zero. Shane Watson faced six balls but pocketed just a single. Jadeja dismissed him at a time when it was necessary for someone to stay on the crease and lend a hand to de Villiers, who found that partnership from Stuart Binny. Before given legs before wicket in Jadeja’s over, the right-handed Bengaluru born batsman scored 21 runs off 15 balls. His knock comprised two fours and a six.  When his wicket was earned by GL, RCB were at 68 runs. The target was far ahead from this point as well but was brought close by de Villiers and Iqbal Abdulla who played not out innings of 79 runs in 47 balls (4 x 5 and 6 x 5) and 33 runs off 25 balls (4 x 3 and 6 x 1), respectively. At a stage where it was apparent that Raina’s men will qualify for finals, de Villiers and left-handed batsman Iqbal Abdulla snatched victory from them.

The win made Royal Challengers Bangalore reach at a place that wasn’t likely during league phase. Despite the fact that Gujarat Lions missed being victorious in the match played a day ago, they still have a second chance. Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad are to meet each other at Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi today in eliminator. It is a do or die game for both teams who had equal points to stay in top four. The squad that wins on Wednesday will contest against Gujarat Lions in qualifier two. Since the final is scheduled to take place on May 29, each team is focusing on getting their best out. de Villiers was awarded ‘player of the match’ for setting foundation of RCB’s success and staying there till the end as target was attained in 18.2 overs for the loss of six wickets. RCB are in cloud nine post registering 4-wicket win on the opponents.

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