Virat Kohli conceded that Royal Challengers Bangalore lacked intensity and did not bring out their ‘A’ game against Delhi Capitals, whom he believes are one of the tough sides to beat, after their 59-run loss in their Indian Premier League (IPL) meeting in Dubai on Monday.
Virat Kohli came up with a laboured 43 as he took 39 balls when the asking rate was creeping up in their 197-run chase. Kohli eventually got out as he did not get support from the middle-order which was dented by the all-round Delhi Capitals bowling attack. Kagiso Rabada picked up the biggest figures of IPL 2020 – 4/28 and Axar Patel and R Ashwin jolted the RCB batting unit in the powerplay.
Delhi Capitals stormed to the top of the table with 4 wins from 5 matches, collecting 8 points as they look set to reach the play-offs earlier than the chasing pack.
“Delhi are playing some good cricket. Their batting line up is fearless, they have a good balance in the side, their bowling line up is pretty good too and they will be hard to beat, I wouldn’t say unbeatable but they are a tough side to beat. Against such sides we have to bring our A game and top intensity which I don’t think we did tonight,” Virat Kohli said.
Earlier in the day, RCB’s familiar problems return to haunt them as they leaked aplenty – 63 in the powerplay as Prithvi Shaw took the new-ball bowlers to the cleaners. Even as Washington Sundar came up with a tight spell, the others were off their mark. Pacer Navdeep Saini had an off day as he conceded 48 runs in just 3 overs.
Delhi Capitals were spot on with both their bowling and batting performances. They had lost their veteran spinner, Amit Mishra, to an injury but they were not hampered by the setback. Despite Shreyas Iyer missing out, the likes of Shaw, Rishabh Pant and Marcus Stoinis stepped up to post an above-par total. Stoinis was brutal as he helped DC collect 94 runs in their last 7 overs, hitting a 26-ball 53 not out.
Virat Kohli banks on Chris Morris to boost RCB balance
Kohli conceded that the execution with the ball at the death wasn’t upto the mark in their hammering in Dubai. “The execution with the ball towards the end could have been better and with the bat as well. Not a complete performance in any regard today.
“We were quite aggressive with the new ball, Prithvi and Shkihar batted really well. I think Prithvi took the game on and we expected that, we kept a catching position and even tried to pick a wicket with the spinner. We got into the game after the first six and then Stoinis batted really well in the end, we gave him a life, he took the game away from us.”
Nonetheless, with RCB still at the 3rd spot, having won 3 of their 5 matches so far in the season. Kohli believes Chris Morris, their expensive all-rounder is nearing his full fitness, and will add to the balance of the side once available for selection.
“Chris was really close to playing today as well but couldn’t make it. We have four days before the next game, once he comes back into the squad it is a different balance altogether.
“The good thing is we have won three out of five, we have lost two where we haven’t played good cricket, so I think it is about rectifying those small mistakes,” Kohli said.
RCB have a 5-day break to reassess things and come out stronger as they next face Chennai Super Kings on Saturday, October 10.