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Cricket news - Slick Siraj leads RCB's rout of KKR

Siraj finished with figures of 3/8.

Siraj finished with figures of 3/8.

Mohammed Siraj wasn't supposed to bowl the second over of the game. After Chris Morris found a hint of swing in the first, Virat Kohli changed his decision to bowl Washington Sundar and instead threw the ball to the seamer he'd brought in for this game at the expense of spinner Shabhaz Ahmed. It turned out to be a masterstroke as Siraj ran through the KKR top-order, finishing with figures of 3 for 8, as KKR made a paltry 84/8. RCB chased that target down with 39 balls to spare and moved up to second in the standings, furthering their ambitions of getting two cracks at making the IPL 2020 final.

Siraj created IPL history...

... by becoming the first bowler to bowl two maiden overs in a game. They were also the first two overs he bowled today. With this third delivery, he took out Rahul Tripathi. The KKR opener was strangled in the Chris Morris over and sought to run a ball outside off-stump down to third man. The edge settled in AB de Villiers's gloves.

Out walked Nitish Rana to a field set for a bouncer. The leg gully too, moved into position. It was a double bluff as Siraj bowled a full-inswinger to sneak inside a tentative poke and lay the off-stump to waste. Siraj followed that double-wicket maiden with another wicket-maiden in the next. This time, Tom Banton played inside the line to a scrambled seam delivery nicking it to the 'keeper.

It can't have been just Siraj?

While Siraj was an inspired selection who played his role in the pace pack well, RCB complemented him with excellent in-ring fielding. Morris led the way with the three stops at mid-off while fielders at point and cover-point ensured batsmen got to bowl at one batsmen consistently. That meant there was no release for KKR who crawled their way to the lowest PowerPlay score this season - 17/4.

And the spinners?

They eventually came into the attack only in the 8th over. Yuzvendra Chahal didn't take long to make a mark himself, pinging Dinesh Karthik's pads with a googly. Kohli reviewed the umpire's decision with two seconds to go and gave Karthik his fifth dismissal against a leggie this season. Chahal then went on to remove Cummins with a tossed up delivery wide of off-stump while Sundar took out Eoin Morgan - the only batsman to apply himself. Morgan made 30 from 34 and scored half of all the fours (6) and sixes (2) KKR hit in their entire innings.

Anything of note in RCB's chase?

Lockie Ferguson, the hero of KKR's win over SRH, was brought into bowl only after the PowerPlay, by when Devdutt Padikkal and Aaron Finch had put on 44. With his third ball, Ferguson dismissed Finch while Padikkal ran himself out later in the over. They were about the only blips for RCB, who even got Gurkeerat Mann some batting time at No.3.

Sum up all the records, dubious or otherwise, set in this game

4 - Maidens bowled by RCB, the most in an IPL innings

2 - Maidens bowled by Siraj, the most by a single bowler in an IPL match

84 - The lowest total batting first for a team that weren't bowled out.

15 - Most overs taken for a team to score 50 runs, beating the 13.1 taken by KXIP against CSK in Durban, 2009.

The last time KKR fielded a line-up without Narine or Russell...

...was in April 2012, incidentally also against RCB. They've been two giants of the T20 format and central to KKR's plans. Their absence couldn't have been emphasised more emphatically.

Brief scores: Kolkata Knight Riders 84/8 in 20 overs (Eoin Morgan 30; Mohammed Siraj 3-8, Yuzvendra Chahal 2-15) lost to Royal Challengers Bangalore 85/2 in 13.3 overs (Devdutt Padikkal 25, Gurkeerat Mann 21*; Lockie Ferguson 1-17) by eight wickets.

Next on the agenda...

...for RCB is a game against IPL 2020 stragglers, CSK, on Sunday afternoon in Dubai. KKR will play 24 hours earlier, in Abu Dhabi, against a team at the other end of the points table, Delhi Capitals.

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