CSK vs RCB: Kohli leads from the front as Royal Challengers Bangalore ease past Chennai Super Kings | Cricket News – Times of India


After a slow start to his IPL season, Virat Kohli seems to have got into his stride in the UAE. The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) skipper led from the front and hit an unbeaten 90 off 52 balls in challenging circumstances to help his side notch up a 37-run victory in Dubai on Saturday. The win was RCB’s fourth in six matches while MS Dhoni‘s boys slumped to their fifth loss in seven games.
In response to RCB’s total of 169/4, Chennai Super Kings limped to 132/8 in 20 overs. Ambati Rayudu was not at his best in his innings of 42 while the rest of the batsmen did not produce a meaningful contribution. Aside from Kohli with the bat, all the RCB bowlers did their job. Chris Morris and Washington Sundar were particularly impressive.
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RCB had to rebuild after being reduced to 67/3 in 11 overs. They managed to do so as they hit 74 runs off the last five overs to punish CSK in the final few overs. Shivam Dube played his part for RCB with an innings of 22* (14b) as he and Kohli stitched together a partnership of 76 runs for the fifth wicket. CSK were once again sloppy at the death.
Kohli adopted a familiar template to his innings. He began steadily, running hard between the wickets and finding the occasional boundary.

At 103/4 in 16 overs, though, Kohli knew that they needed a strong finish to their innings. Shardul Thakur (2/40) had done well for CSK till then, but Kohli and Dube went after him and fetched 14 runs. RCB went on to smash Sam Curran for three sixes in the next over and made use of CSK’s profligacy to capitalise at the death.
On a pitch that seemed to be slightly on the slower side, the CSK bowlers hit the right lengths and made life difficult for the RCB batsmen to begin with. The wicket of AB de Villiers was particularly crucial.
The South African, who is the lynchpin of the RCB batting line-up, fell for 0 in the 11th over when he drove outside off at a cross-seam delivery by Thakur. All he managed was a thin outside edge through to Dhoni behind the stumps.

CSK had a far from ideal start to their run chase. They lost Faf du Plessis and Shane Watson in the first six overs with only 26 runs on the board. Washington Sundar got both the wickets, containing the CSK batsmen with his quick, accurate off-spin.
N Jagadeesan, coming in for the out-of-form Kedar Jadhav, gave a good account of himself on his CSK debut. In trying circumstances, he made 33 but his end came meekly when he was run out in the 15th over courtesy a direct hit by Morris.
It brought Dhoni to the crease with CSK on 89/3 in 14.2 overs and having a mountain to climb. Although Dhoni smashed Yuzvendra Chahal for a six off his third ball to infuse some hope perhaps, his downfall was brought about when he tried to hit another maximum in the same over. Needing 64 from the final four overs, they continued losing wickets from thereon and faded away in the run chase.

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