After losing six straight games, Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) have won three matches in four outings to keep their dreams of qualifying for the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 playoffs. But that dream can shatter any moment, as they can afford to lose any of the remaining four matches. And the worst part, winning these four matches may not be enough to finish in the top-four too.
But the Virat Kohli-led outfit will hope to do their job, and continue the winning run when they face Kings XI Punjab (KXIP). It was against KXIP that RCB ended their six-match losing streak. A league double against the R Ashwin-led side will give RCB a massive boost in their confidence.
What happened so far?
Yes, RCB had lost six matches on the bounce. Then they not only found the winning ways but also survived a brutal assault from Chennai Super Kings (CSK) captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni in the last game. That's a pretty good thing to go with for a team which was staring down the barrel a couple of weeks back. Before that, they had also braved Andre Russell storm. But their first taste of victory came against KXIP. For KXIP, it's about consolidating their position in the points table. They have five and lost five and have played some close matches.
England all-rounder Moeen Ali will play his last match of the season before heading back home for Cricket World Cup 2019 preparations. He was one of the stars in RCB's last two wins.
But the arrival of Dale Steyn has added much-needed firepower to RCB's bowling department.
KXIP opener Chris Gayle remained unbeaten on 99, one short of a hundred when the two teams met earlier in the season at Mohali. And the big Jamaican will be eager for some fireworks at his old den. The M Chinnaswamy Stadium pitch possibly the best to bat on. Expect runs. Yes, Kohli and AB de Villiers are also there.
Here's everything else you need to know about the match
Match: 42nd match of IPL 2019 between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kings XI Punjab
Date: April 24, 2019 (Wednesday)
Time: 8:00 PM IST, Toss at 7:30
Venue: M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru
Live Telecast: Star Sports Network
Live Streaming: Hotstar, Jio TV
Form guide (latest first)
RCB beat CSK by one run, beat Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by ten runs, lost to Mumbai Indians (MI) by five wickets
KXIP lost to Delhi Capitals (DC) by five wickets, beat Rajasthan Royals (RR) by 12 runs, lost to RCB by eight wickets
In the previous 23 meetings, RCB have won 11 times while KXIP were victorious in 12 occasions.
RCB to win
RCB: Parthiv Patel (wk), Virat Kohli (capt), AB de Villiers, Moeen Ali, Marcus Stoinis, Akshdeep Nath, Pawan Negi, Umesh Yadav, Dale Steyn, Navdeep Saini, Yuzvendra Chahal
KXIP: KL Rahul (wk), Chris Gayle, Mayank Agarwal, David Miller, Mandeep Singh, Sarfaraz Khan, Ravichandran Ashwin (c), Hardus Viljoen, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Mohammed Shami, M Ashwin
RCB: Virat Kohli, Parthiv Patel, AB de Villiers, Colin de Grandhomme, Umesh Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Moeen Ali, Shimron Hetmyer, Dale Steyn, Shivam Dube, Mohammed Siraj, Navdeep Saini, Devdutt Padikkal, Himmat Singh, Milind Kumar, Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Heinrich Klaasen, Pawan Negi, Washington Sundar, Akshdeep Nath, Prayas Ray Barman, Kulwant Khejroliya, Tim Southee.
KXIP: Lokesh Rahul, Chris Gayle, Mayank Agarwal, Sarfaraz Khan, David Miller, Mandeep Singh, Sam Curran, Ravichandran Ashwin, Andrew Tye, Murugan Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Mujeeb Ur Rehman, Karun Nair, Moises Henriques, Varun Chakravarthi, Harpreet Brar, Simran Singh, Nicholas Pooran, Hardus Viljoen, Ankit Rajpoot, Arshdeep Singh, Darshan Nalkande, Agnivesh Ayachi