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Cricket news - Chahal spins RCB to comeback win

Yuzvendra Chahal's triple strike triggered SRH's collapse

Yuzvendra Chahal's triple strike triggered SRH's collapse

Devdutt Padikkal scored a sparkling 56 on IPL debut but his and AB de Villiers's half-centuries appeared to be going in vain before Yuzvendra Chahal imparted his magic touch to the proceedings and helped Royal Challengers Bangalore register a 10-run win over Sunrisers Hyderabad at the Dubai International Stadium. Chahal's 3 for 18 torpedoed SRH, who lost 8 for 32 after being propped up to 121/2 by Jonny Bairstow's 61.

So Chahal triggered that collapse?

Very much so. He was actually wicketless after bowling 17 probing deliveries. On a wicket that was aiding slow turn, he cut down on his pace and beat both the well-set Bairstow and Manish Pandey in flight. His first two overs cost only 10 but SRH hadn't given him a wicket despite struggling to pick him. The match situation forced Kohli's hand into giving his ace legspinner a third over. With no real run-rate pressure, Pandey miscalculated and miscued a loft to long-off. The 71-run stand was ended.

But Bairstow was still there...

Yes, and batting very well (despite three dropped catches) at that. Chahal came back to bowl his final over with SRH needing 43 to win from 30. All Bairstow, batting on 61, had to do was play the over out. Instead, off the second ball, he attempted an ugly slow sweep and was clean bowled. Vijay Shankar walked in and got a googly first-up, which snuck through his attempted drive to hit timber. The soft underbelly of SRH's middle-order was exposed and the game turned.

Were there any other notable contributors to SRH's collapse?

Yes. Shivam Dube and Navdeep Saini. Dube was used expertly by Virat Kohli, who had a couple of players having an off day. Dube bowled one over immediately after Pandey got out and escaped by conceding just three runs. Dube got to bowl his cutters for two more overs and ended up with figures of 2 for 15. Saini hit great speeds and castled two batsmen at the end for figures of 2 for 25.

Who had those off days?

Umesh Yadav was one. He struggled with his line and kept offering Bairstow leg-stump half-volleys or rank short balls that the Englishman dispatched with ease. Yadav went for 48 from his 4 overs.

Dale Steyn didn't have all that great a match himself going at 9 runs an over and putting down a catch at fine-leg off Bairstow. Incidentally, Finch too reprieved the SRH opener, letting a fiercely hit drive burst through his fingers at extra cover.

Now about that boy Padikkal. He came into the game with a reputation?

Yes. The 20-year-old from Karnataka topped the scoring charts in both the Vijay Hazare 50-over tournament and the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 tournament. You can read his story here but he's not one to be fazed by a new stage.

Deepu Narayanan @deeputalks Devdutt Padikkal debut match FC: 7 & 77 vs Maharashtra 2018 List A: 58 vs Jharkhand 2019 T20: 53* vs Uttarakhand 2019 IPL: 51* vs SRH 2020 #SRHvRCB #IPL2020 02:52 PM • Sep 09, 2020

How did RCB's new opener go about his job?

Actually RCB began IPL 2020 with two new openers. Padikkal, of course, was the greenhorn. Joining him at the other end was Australian captain Aaron Finch playing for his eighth franchise in this competition. Their roles in the partnership, however, was no reflection of their experience level. Padikkal was off the blocks in a hurry, hitting three boundaries off Sandeep Sharma while Finch kept the inswingers from his long-term rival, Bhuvneshwar Kumar at bay.

Standing tall at 6'3", Padikkal invoked memories of Yuvraj Singh, not only for his tall, upright presence at the crease, but also for his nimble feet. He made room and swivel-pulled anything short at him and when Sandeep or T. Natarajan overcompensated in length, he leant into an off-drive or wristed them away behind square. Padikkal played 26 deliveries in the Powerplay, hitting seven boundaries in his 37. Finch made just 12.

Wouldn't pace off the ball have worked well against such a player?

Mitchell Marsh, picked ahead of Mohammad Nabi, offered that very skillset. Unfortunately for SRH, two balls in, the all-rounder twisted his ankle on his followthrough and limped off two balls later. Marsh came back in to bat right at the end of SRH's chase and struggled to put any weight on his feet. He faces a spell on the sidelines.

Vijay Shankar, who completed that over, would eventually end up dismissing Padikkal but not before Padikkal had made a sparkling 56 (42) in a 90-run opening stand.

90-run opening stand, Kohli-AB to follow yet RCB made only 163?

Yes, it was down to losing the openers off successive deliveries. First ball of the 12th left-arm spinner Abhishek Sharma took out Finch, forcing Kohli and de Villiers into a rebuild. The pair put on 33 from 4.4 overs, down to a combination of factors. One, was the team selection which saw the relatively inexperienced Josh Phillipe picked as 'keeper over Moeen Ali. That meant the middle-order was not the most reassuring.

It was the exact period of play that saw Rashid Khan operating. Kohli and de Villiers decided to milk the spinner instead of taking chances against him resulting in the Afghan finishing with steady figures of 4-0-31-0. Unfortunately for the RCB pair, their attempts to break out of the shackles resulted in Kohli miscuing a Natarajan slower ball to fall for 14.

The important AB finish...

RCB had AB de Villiers to thank for their recovery from that mini slump. Despite Bhuvneshwar keeping it tight at the end, de Villiers took nine of a Natrajan over and then slammed two sixes off Sandeep's 19th over. He began the final over with a four and two off Bhuvneshwar to complete a 29-ball half-century before getting run-out, attempting to get back on strike. RCB got just one more run off the final three balls, but those accumulated by de Villiers were enough on the day.

Where do the teams go from here?

RCB have a short turnaround. They play Kings XI Punjab on Thursday. Sunrisers Hyderabad have a four-day gap and another COVID-19 test to undergo before they move across the border over to Abu Dhabi where they'll take on Kolkata Knight Riders on Saturday.

Brief scores: Royal Challengers Bangalore 163/5 in 20 overs (Devdutt Padikkal 56, AB de Villiers 51; Bhuvneshwar Kumar 0-25, T Natarajan 1-34) beat Sunrisers Hyderabad 153 in 19.4 overs (Jonny Bairstow 61; Yuzvendra Chahal 3-18, Shivam Dube 2-15) by 10 runs.

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