RR batters Steven Smith (36-ball 57) and Jos Buttler (25-ball 24) staged a fightback with a 58 run-partnership after losing quick wickets to power their team to a respectable total of 177/6 against Royal Challengers Bangalore on Saturday at Dubai. Robin Uthappa (22-ball 41), who same down as an opener for Royals for the first time this season, ensured his team got off to a great start.
Rajasthan Royals had won the toss and opted to bat. RR made a surprising move by getting veteran Robin Uthappa to open with star all-rounder Ben Stokes. Not even a big shocker as Uthappa has scored his most runs in IPL as an opener. Uthappa started well and made made a mockery of the all-rounder’s second over by smashing him for back-to-back boundaries.
RR’s new opening pair of Robin Uthappa and Ben Stokes ensured that their team gets off to a flying start but Royal Challengers Bangalore fought back with 3 quick wickets.
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Chris Morris first departed in-form Ben Stokes in the final over of the powerplay before Yuzvendra Chahal sent back Uthappa and Sanju Samson in successive deliveries to dent RR in Dubai. Jos Buttler and Steve Smith then joined forces in the middle. The duo soon steadied their ship and notched 100 up for their team.
Chris Morris broke another major stand as fine partnership of 58 runs between Smith and Buttler came to an end with Buttler skying a ball high straight to the fielder Navdeep Saini at mid-off. Smith looked in sublime touch and scored his 11th IPL half-century off just 30 deliveries.
Smith and Tewatia started exploding in the death overs and with it propelled Rajasthan to 177/6 against Bangalore.
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Earlier, Rajasthan Royals skipper Steve Smith won the toss and elected to bat first against Royal Challengers Bangalore at Dubai. RR have gone unchanged, playing the same XI as their last game against Delhi Capitals.
RCB have made two changes to their Playing XI. Gurkeerat Mann replaces Mohammad Siraj. Shahbaz Ahmed comes in for all-rounder Shivam Dube.
With 10 points in their kitty, third placed-RCB who are behind Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals in the points table will eye another win to bolster their chances of making it to the playoffs.
Playing eleven for both Rajasthan Royals and Royal Challengers Bangalore
Rajasthan Royals (Playing XI): Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler(w), Steven Smith(c), Sanju Samson, Robin Uthappa, Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat, Kartik Tyagi
Royal Challengers Bangalore (Playing XI): Aaron Finch, Devdutt Padikkal, Virat Kohli(c), AB de Villiers(w), Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Washington Sundar, Chris Morris, Shahbaz Ahmed, Isuru Udana, Navdeep Saini, Yuzvendra Chahal