Batting hamstrings Faf-them in playoff battle

Henry

After six consecutive victories, the Royal Challengers Bengaluru’s (RCB) winning run in this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) has come to an end.

Faf du Plessis’s team finished bottom with four wickets in a play-off match against the Rajasthan Royals in Ahmedabad.

RCB have not been able to walk away with the IPL laurels once in 17 attempts and Du Plessis believes that batting has now let his team down.

Not a single batsman could score more than 34 runs and the dangerous Glenn Maxwell – who is having a difficult tournament behind the plate – was taken out for a wicket with his first delivery.

“We were probably about 20 runs short on the scoreboard and we should have delivered a more competitive performance with the bat; even if the ball didn’t shoot through the pitch quickly,” said Du Plessis.

“It can be tough to bat first because the ball sticks to the bat surface a bit, as it were. You think you are on track to score 190 runs, but then you lose a few wickets and then the struggle begins.”

However, he is proud of the way his team fought back in the field.

Mohammed Siraj took two wickets, while Virat Kohli did an excellent job on the boundary to create an important run-out chance.

With the score at 160/6, the game was balanced on a knife’s edge, but Rovman Powell (16 runs from 8 balls) concluded the showdown for the Royals with a couple of boundary shots.

Tomorrow, the Royals play the last qualifying match against the Sunrisers Hyderabad for a place in the final against the Kolkata Knight Riders.

  • Summary of the scorecard:

Royal Challengers Bengaluru 172/8 in 20 overs: Rajat Paditar 34, Virat Kohli 33 and Avesh Khan 3/44.

Rajasthan Royals 174/6 in 19 overs: Yashasvi Jaiswal 45, Riyan Parag 36 and Mohammed Siraj 2/33.