In Match 43 of the TATA IPL 2023, Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) bounced back after their defeat against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) to beat Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) by 18 runs at the Bharat Ratna Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ekana Cricket Stadium in Lucknow.
RCB won the toss and elected to bat. The opening pair of Virat Kohli and Faf du Plessis got off to a steady start but found it difficult to score boundaries as in the powerplay, LSG limited them to just three fours and a six.
At the end of the first six overs, RCB had reached a score of 42/0. However, LSG suffered a setback as KL Rahul had to leave the field due to a leg injury he sustained while trying to save a boundary in the second over.
RCB struggled to score boundaries in the following overs, with Kohli breaking the drought by hitting a cover drive for four off Yash Thakur after 23 balls. However, LSG’s pressure paid off when Ravi Bishnoi stumped Kohli (31 off 30) as he tried to charge down the track but missed his swing. Anuj Rawat (9 off 11) then fell to a catch at deep mid-wicket off a pull shot.
Bishnoi dealt another blow by trapping Glenn Maxwell (4 off 5) LBW after he missed his reverse sweep. Amit Mishra caught Suyash Prabhudessai (6 off 7) at long off, with K Gowtham making a fantastic adjustment to dive forward and pouch the ball inches above the ground.
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Rain briefly interrupted play, and after the resumption, Dinesh Karthik hit a four and a six off Naveen-ul-Haq and Amit Mishra, respectively, to up the ante. Mishra struck back by dismissing Faf du Plessis (44 off 40) as he miscued a slog sweep, and Krunal Pandya took a fantastic catch.
Naveen then LBW-trapped Mahipal Lomror (3 off 3) as RCB continued to lose wickets. Yash Thakur ran out Karthik with a reflex fielding effort off his own bowling, knocking down the stumps at the non-striker’s end.
Naveen ended RCB’s innings well, picking up two wickets – of Karn Sharma and Mohd. Siraj – and conceding just six runs. RCB hit only six fours and two sixes in their entire innings, with Faf du Plessis top-scoring with 44 off 40, which helped RCB post 126/9.
Chasing 127, LSG had a poor start as they lost Kyle Mayers early. Hazlewood and Hasaranga struck in quick succession to reduce LSG to 21/3. The fall of wickets continued, and LSG lost half their side inside seven overs.
K Gowtham provided some hope with a couple of sixes, but Stoinis, Gowtham, and Mishra were dismissed in quick succession. The injured KL Rahul walked out to bat with 24 needed off 8, but he couldn’t rescue LSG as they were bowled out for 108 in 19.4 overs.
RCB’s collective bowling performance saw the bowlers bowl with discipline and pick up regular wickets, ably supported by the fielders who pulled off brilliant catches, stumping and run-outs. Hazlewood and Hasaranga took two wickets each, while Karn Sharma and Harshal Patel took one wicket each. Patel took the final wicket of Amit Mishra to seal the victory for RCB.
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