Rajasthan Royals crushed Royal Challengers Bangalore by six wickets in a one-sided match in Abu Dhabi on Saturday. Catch all the highlights here. (Scorecard | Commentary | Points Table | Full Schedule):
Pravin Tambe Man-of-the-Match: I love bowling. I bowled a lot of googlies to the left-handers because the wicket was on the slower side.
That's the end of this game. Kolkata Knight Riders vs Kings XI Punjab up next.
Shane Watson, Rajasthan Royals captain: It was a strange game of cricket. It was a little bit of a chaos in the RCB innings. It's nice to be able to walk away with such a comfortable win. Tambe is very difficult to get away. He is a very cagey bowler and he got Virat, one of the best players of spin in the world. The pitch was a little drier than the previous game we played here. I am very happy because this win is a very good way to bounce back.
Virat Kohli: Royal Challengers Bangalore captain: Looks like we did not arrive on the field ready. It was one of those days when we kept losing wickets every over. Two played ons, two runs outs is not something that happens in every game. The pressure created by RR was extended for a long time. You change your mindset when a wicket falls in every over. It was a good batting wicket. We are a much better side than what this performance suggests.
18:40 (IST): Rajasthan Royals cruised home to a six-wicket win after bowling the Royal Challengers Bangalore for 70, their lowest total ever in the Indian Premier League. Pravin Tambe snared 4/20 as the Royal Challengers were shot out for an embarrassingly low score, in fact the third lowest by any team in the seven editions of the tournament. A target of 71 was obviously not going to challenge the Royals but somehow they made a bit of a heavy weather of the chase, even after Ajinkya Rahane provided them with a brisk start. However, some clean hitting by skipper Shane Watson ensured the Royals got home with plenty to spare.
18:39 (IST): WICKET! And Watson follows it up with a poor shot to fall within sight of victory. Stuart Binny joins Abhishek Nayar in the middle.
18:38 (IST): SIX! Watson clears the stands with ease off a Chahal delivery. The Royals are three runs away from a win here.
18:30 (IST): Dinda will continue his spell but it's all over for the Royal Challengers. It has been a treat for the Royals and their fans though, who can't seem to have enough of their team.
18:27 (IST): SIX! Watson gives Chahal the charge and smacks it straight over the bowler's head. 50 up for the Royals in the 11th over.
18:26 (IST): Just two runs off the Dinda over. Rajasthan Royals are 48/3 halfway through the innings.
18:23 (IST): Dinda into the attack after the timeout.
18:20 (IST): Chahal starts off with a maiden. RR are 46/3 after 9 overs and it's the strategic timeout.
18:18 (IST): Chahal into the attack with the Royals needing 25 more to win this.
18:16 (IST): Both Rampaul and Starc have now bowled out their four overs. Kohli will have to fall back on other options now, with RCB on the verge of defeat. RR 46/3 after 8 overs.
18:14 (IST): FOUR! Nair hit it along the line to a delivery from Rampaul. Very good looking shot on a day when most batsmen have played poorly. The Royals are inching closer to a convincing win.
18:12 (IST): FOUR! Watson plays a sweet looking shot straight past Starc after an excited appeal for a catch behind the stumps by Patel was turned down by the umpire. RR 40/3 after 7 overs.
18:08 (IST): WICKET! Starc gets his second one. Karun Nair tried to play far away from his body but all he managed was a thick edge to Patel behind the wickets. RR: 36/3 off 6.3 overs.
18:02 (IST): WICKET! Second one goes down for the Royals as Samson fails to make his ground before Patel whips the bails off. Run-out. Some hopeful RCB fans are still cheering. RR 35/2 off 5.4 overs.
17:58 (IST): Rajasthan Royals are 32/1 after 5 overs.
17:56 (IST): WICKET! Starc gets rid of Rahane, who smashed a quick 23 off 19 balls as RR reach 31/1 off 4.3 overs. Samson joins Nair in the middle.
17:53 (IST): Another economical over from Rampaul as RR reach 28/0 off four overs.
17:47 (IST): FOUR! Cracking shot from Rahane as Starc pitches short again. The Royals are in a hurry to finish this off.RR 24/0 after 3 overs.
17:46 (IST): FOUR! After a good over from Rampaul, Starc starts his second with a short and wide one, which is promptly dismissed by Rahane to the fence. RR 17/0 off 2.1 overs.
17:40 (IST): Rajasthan Royals are 11/0 after the first over, chasing 71. 60 more to win from nine overs. This could be a walk in the park for the Royals.
17:38 (IST): FOUR! Exquisite timing from Rahane and the ball races away to the fence. He won't take too many risks here but will look to score quickly.
17:37 (IST): FOUR! Rahane gets a fine touch on the ball from Starc and RR are away.
17:35 (IST): The Rajasthan Royals openers Ajinkya Rahane and Karun Nayar are in the middle; they need to chase down 71 in 20 overs.
Pravin Tambe took 4/20 and Kane Richardson took 2/18 as Royal Challengers Bangalore were bowled out for 70 in 15 overs, their lowest ever total in the Indian Premier League. After being asked to bat by the Rajasthan Royals, RCB never got any sort of momentum, losing their top five inside the power play. Virat Kohli could have been the lone warrior but when he too departed to Tambe, the writing was on the wall and it was clear that RCB were going to struggle to even reach triple figures. "The morale in the team is high after we managed to bowl out such a strong batting line-up for only 70," said Tambe after the innings.
17:17 (IST): WICKET! Tambe snaps up Dinda as the RCB fold up for 70, their lowest total ever in the IPL.
17:15 (IST): WICKET! Tambe has the last laugh as Rampaul tries to go aerial again. He failed to read the googly and Southee took an easy catch. RCB are 70/9 after 14.3 overs.
17:14 (IST): SIX! Rampaul throws all caution in the air and hammers Tambe into the stands.
17:12 (IST): WICKET! Bhatia snares Starc, who played it straight to Binny at backward point, who took the catch despite tumble. RCB are 62/8 after 14 overs.
17:10 (IST): FOUR! Good placement by Starc as the ball runs past two diving fielders behind square on the off-side. RCB have avoided RR's lowest of 58.
17:09 (IST): Rajat Bhatia in the attack after the timeout. What could have the RCB management discussed with their batsmen in the middle? We'll find out soon.
17:06 (IST): Strategic timeout with RCB on 55/7, with seven overs remaining.
17:04 (IST): The lowest total ever in the history of the Indian Premier League - Rajasthan Royals 58 all out vs Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2009 in Cape Town. RCB are now tantalizingly close to breaking that dubious record. Their own lowest in the IPL is 82 in the first ever game of the IPL vs Kolkata Knight Riders.
16:56 (IST): WICKET! Virat Kohli perishes to Tambe and it now appears RCB are going to struggle to reach even 100. Starc has now been joined by Rampaul in the middle. RCB are 47/6 off 10.3 overs.
16:53 (IST): RCB are 45/6 halfway through their innings. Expect some fireworks from Kohli - he has realised there is no point trying to hang around. Starc can hit the big ones too.
16:52 (IST): FOUR! Starc hits Southee through the line for a boundary. Good tactics by the Royal Challengers - they are looking for runs instead of biding time here.
16:50 (IST): FOUR! Kohli has decided to be aggressive and get as many runs as he can on his own. He has had no support so far from the other end.
16:48 (IST): FOUR! Kohli slams it through the off-side after the timeout. He has Starc for company and expect him to bat sensibly.
16:44 (IST): WICKET! Morkel decided he had to take Tambe on but all he managed was a miscue a slower one straight down the throat of Steve Smith in the deep. And it's strategic timeout. RCB are 28/6 off 8.4 overs.
16:43 (IST): Pravin Tamble in the attack. Will Kohli or Morkel look to take the spinner on?
16:42 (IST): Just one run off the Watson over. This has been an exceptional bowling performance so far from the Royals. Can Kohli do a Kapil Dev? Back in 183, India were in a similar position against Zimbabwe, before Kapil came in and hammered 175. The stage is set for Kohli to take his greatness to an all new level.
16:32 (IST): FOUR! Cracking straight drive, says Rameez Raja on air and he could not have put it better, as that Albie Morkel shot pierced the field. He needs to hang on with Kohli for the majority of this innings.
16:29 (IST): WICKET! Watson does it. Horrible shot from Rana, who has played on. Vijay Mallya is not looking very amused at the moment. The Royals are breathing fire. RCB are 17/5 in 5.2 overs.
16:28 (IST): Shane Watson brings himself on with RCB on 16/4 off 5 overs. What can the RR captain do here? Another wicket, preferably Kohli's and the Royals could make the game their own.
16:23 (IST): Another top over from Southee, just one off it. He hasn't taken any of the four wickets yet but the Kiwi pacer has bottled one end up nicely. RCB 12/4 after 4 overs.
16:18 (IST): FOUR! Take that. Short from Richardson and Kohli was quickly in position to send that ball screaming to the fence. Top shot under pressure from the RCB captain. RCB are 11/4 after the 3 overs.
16:15 (IST): WICKET! Richardson has knocked off the dangerous AB de Villiers for a first ball duck. Two out of two and Richardson is on a hat-trick. Sachin Rana survives. RCB are 6/4 in the 2.3 overs.
16:14 (IST): WICKET! Kane Richardson strikes with his first ball and removes Yuvraj Singh. RCB are in all sorts of trouble as AB de Villiers joins Kohli at the crease. What a start this is by the Royals.
16:11 (IST): Good over from Tim Southee. RCB are 5/2 after the second over, with Kohli and Yuvraj the men in the middle.
16:05 (IST): WICKET! Another one and this is a disastrous start for RCB. New man in Virat Kohli tried called for a quick single but Parthiv Patel was caught short of his ground. Yuvraj Singh joins Kohli in the middle. RCB 1/2 in 0.5 overs.
16:03 (IST): WICKET! Binny gets an edge off Takawale's bat, which is safely pouched by Sanju Samson behind the stumps. First one down for the Royal Challengers, who are 1/1 in 0.4 overs.
16:01 (IST): Stuart Binny with the new ball to Parthiv Patel, who takes strike for RCB.
Here are the playing XIs:
Rajasthan Royals: Abhishek Nayar, Ajinkya Rahane, Sanju Samson (WK), Shane Watson (Captain), Karun Nair, Stuart Binny, Steve Smith, Rajat Bhatia, Kane Richardson, Pravin Tambe, Tim Southee
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Parthiv Patel (WK), Yogesh Takawale, Virat Kohli (Captain), Yuvraj Singh, AB de Villiers, Albie Morkel, Sachin Rana, Ashok Dinda, Mitchell Starc, Yuzvendra Chahal, Ravi Rampaul
15:32 (IST): Rajasthan Royals won the toss and decided to bowl against Royal Challengers Bangalore. Kohli is happy to be able to bat on what he says is a flat pitch. Two changes for both teams. RR have added Nair and Richardson for Kulkarni and Faulkner. RCB have brought in Ravi Rampaul and Sachin Rana for Muralitharan and Varun Aaron.
Recovering from back-to-back defeats, a demoralised Rajasthan Royals will have to sort out their issues before they clash with Bangalore Royal Challengers.
After a last-over win against Hyderabad in their campaign-opener, Rajasthan suffered two successive defeats against Kings XI Punjab and Chennai Super Kings and skipper Shane Watson will quickly have to address his team's batting and bowling issues. (Chennai Super Kings vs Rajasthan Royals: As it happened)
Bangalore, on the other hand, were on a high with two successive wins before Kolkata snatched a two-run unlikely victory to leave Virat Kohli and company stunned. Rajasthan have to better their all-round showing as both their batting and bowling have failed on separate occasions. (How KKR snatched victory from RCB)
If it was Ajinkya Rahane and Stuart Binny who helped Rajasthan narrowly cross the line in their first match, Watson and Sanju Samson came good in the next match with twin half-centuries to put up a good total against Punjab but their bowlers could not defend the total.
But in their last match, Rajasthan's batting faltered against a disciplined Chennai Super Kings bowling attack.
The 2008 champions have some big names like James Faulkner, Brad Hodge and Steven Smith, besides Watson, in their ranks. But apart from Watson's one innings, none of the star players could set the stage on fire. Domestic players, Rahane and Samson have come up with one good innings but they have lacked consistency.
The pace department led by Dhawal Kulkarni and medium-pacer Rajat Bhatia have also not made much of an impact. Kane Richardson too has taken three wickets in two matches but he missed the last game due to sickness. (Read full preview)
Saturday could see a more determined Yuvraj Singh in action as Royal Challengers Bangalore play Rajasthan Royals at Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. Disappointed with himself after Thursday's two-run defeat against Kolkata Knight Riders, Yuvraj may just choose to make amends against the Shane Watson-led Royals. RCB are third in the table with two wins and a loss while RR are fifth with a win and two defeats.
Yuvraj has been in focus ever since he became the IPL's highest-paid star. On skipper Virat Kohli's insistence, RCB bought the Indian left-hander for a record 14 crores. The defeat against KKR has obviously been a massive disappointment for India's 2011 World cup-winning star. Yuvraj scored a 34-ball 31 with two fours and a six and by his lofty standards, could have scored at a faster rate.
"I am disappointed with myself as I should have stayed there till the end to finish the match," Yuvraj wrote in his newspaper column in the Times of India on Saturday. When Yuvraj perished, RCB needed nine runs off eight balls, but an out-of-the-world catch by KKR debutant Chris Lynn saw the back of the dangerous AB De Villiers with two balls left. KKR pulled off a thriller in a match largely dominated by RCB. (Loss to KKR hurt: Yuvraj)
HOW THINGS STAND
Rajasthan has endured a rocky start to the tournament with just one win form their first three matches. The Australian contingent has performed modestly to date and more will be expected of them against a Bangalore side smarting from its first defeat of the campaign to Kolkata. Bangalore will be counting on their "big three" - Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and Yuvraj Singh - to set the tone with the bat while Rajasthan are considering promoting Shane Watson to the top of the order to get their campaign moving.