Cricket

RCB's IPL Tragedy: 'BCCI Needs To Enforce Sale Of Royal Challengers Bengaluru'

Virat Kohli, 35, continued to show his batting class. The former captain hit the season's first century, and remained perch at the top of the batting charts with 361 runs after seven matches. Sadly though, his team which go singing a rather plucky slogan, "Ee sala, cup namde (This year, the cup is ours)," are at the opposite end of the spectrum: one win in seven matches and with a net run rate of -1.18

(AP Photo/Kashif Masood)
Royal Challengers Bangaluru players step into the field during the Indian Premier League cricket match between Royal Challengers Bangaluru and Sunrisers Hyderabad in Bengaluru, India, Monday, April 15, 2024. (AP Photo/Kashif Masood)
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Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB), often taunted as the glamorous bridesmaid of the world's richest cricket league, started yet another Indian Premier League (IPL) season with renewed vigour, with promises galore. Yet, they are rooted at the bottom of the 10-team league. (Full Coverage)

An opening day defeat against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) didn't deter the RCB faithfulls. Enlivening the promise, the Faf du Plessis-led chased down a stiff target of 177 runs at home to beat Punjab Kings by four wickets with their eternal captain Virat Kohli taking home the Player of the Match award for his classy 77-run knock in 49 balls. Two matches one win and one defeat. Not bad for a team chasing their elusive IPL title.

Kohli, 35, continued to show his batting class. The former captain hit the season's first century, and remained perch at the top of the batting charts with 361 runs after seven matches. Sadly though, his team which go singing a rather plucky slogan, "Ee sala, cup namde (This year, the cup is ours)," are at the opposite end of the spectrum: one win in seven matches and with a net run rate of -1.18.

In the latest humbling, they suffered a 25-run defeat at the hands of Sunrisers Hyderabad at home. For what's worth, RCB fought valiantly in the run-fest after conceding 287/3 -- an IPL record and the second biggest in all of T20 cricket. There were also lionhearted performances, most notably from 38-year-old 'commentator-turned-cricketer' Dinesh Karthik.

There was no joy in defeat. Understandably so, the mood in the RCB camp and its proximity was one of damnation. And the most telling reflection came in the form of a social post of one of the country's greatest sports stars -- Mahesh Bhupathi, the multiple Grand Slam winner.

A Bengaluru resident, the 49-year-old wrote: "For the sake of the Sport, the IPL, the fans and even the players i think BCCI needs to enforce the Sale of RCB to a New owner who will care to build a sports franchise the way most of the other teams have done so. #tragic."

Tragic, indeed.

It's a fact that the BCCI, the Indian cricket board, can make things happen. But truth be told, even BCCI wouldn't dare commit such a public relations blunder. RCB, even though they have won nothing in their 16 years of existence, remain one of the most followed teams with a very lucrative brand value.

For now, for this season, all they could wish for is a miraculous escape. They are stuck in the cricketing purgatory.

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