ANI Photo | “They needed this confidence,” Faf du Plessis after RCB’s thumping 112-run victory against RR

Royal Challengers Bangalore received a major boost ahead of their final after registering a thumping 112-run victory against Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 at the Sawai Mansingh Indoor Stadium on Sunday.
RCB moved to the fifth spot with 12 points and they are still one point shy of the Top-4 spot. Their next two games against Sunrisers Hyderabad and Gujarat Titans will decide whether they will be able to seal their place in the qualifiers or not.
After suffering two consecutive defeats against Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals, this victory will play a crucial role in lifting the spirits of the players ahead of their final two games.
“Hopefully, we can set it up for the last game at the Chinnaswamy. Today was a good one for the team. They needed this confidence to go into the last two games,” RCB skipper Faf du Plessis said after the match.
Even after a victory, RCB could have ended up in the sixth position behind RR due to a low net run rate. However, they ensured to win by enough margin which keeps their hope of playing in the IPL playoffs alive.
RCB pacers Mohammed Siraj and Wayne Parnell set the tone of the game quite early as they dominated the powerplay. Spinners came into the attack which didn’t leave any room for RR to enforce a comeback. Michael Bracewell picked up two crucial wickets which allowed RCB to maintain their control over the game.
“Really good for our NRR. Tough pitch. We batted first and assessed the conditions. We batted in the powerplay and thought 160 will be a good score. We have had a good set-up till the 15th over. But we managed to capitalize on the momentum shift at the end. Great job. Bracewell would want to bowl on this every day of the week. We needed a left-arm spinner. Maybe Shahbaz could have been an option. Wrist spin could have been an attacking option,” du Plessis concluded.
Faf du Plessis and Glenn Maxwell’s half-centuries powered RCB to end the first innings with a score of 171/5.
While chasing a target of 172, RR batters failed to deal with the intensity and aggression of the RCB bowlers. Mohammed Siraj set the tone of the game as he dismissed in-form batter Yashasvi Jaiswal for a two-ball duck.
Jos Buttler’s poor run with the bat continued as he followed the footsteps of his partner for a score of a two-ball duck. Sanju Samson and Joe Root tried to bring the hosts back into the game but they failed to achieve it.
RR skipper Samson played a half-committed shot which went straight into the hands of Anuj Rawat. After facing 10 balls, RR had lost their three batters for a score of 7. As Buttler and Samson became the victims of Parnell, the middle-order battlers were left with too much to do in the next 18 overs.
RR were on the brink of registering the lowest score in the history of IPL against the team which holds the unwanted record. The West Indian batter made sure to avoid such as he struck three consecutive sixes in Karan Sharma’s over.
Hetmyer couldn’t keep up the momentum as he was dismissed by Glenn Maxwell for a score of 35(19).
After his dismissal, RR ended up losing both of their wickets in the 11th over of the game. They ended their innings with a score of 59/10. (ANI)

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