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Royal Challengers Bangalore: Can they take Home the Cup in 2020?

Can the Royal Challengers Bangalore finally lay their hands on the coveted IPL trophy in 2020?

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Royal Challengers Bangalore – IPL History

     The Royal Challengers Bangalore was formed in 2008 and was led by Rahul Dravid in the inaugural season of the IPL. Rahul Dravid emerged as the top scorer in IPL 2018, scoring 371 runs. This wasn’t enough for the Royal Challengers Bangalore though, as they did not perform well as a team, finishing the season at a disappointing 7th on the IPL table.

     Virat Kohli took over as the captain of the Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2012, and he has led the club in 8 IPL seasons. The Royal Challengers Bangalore have not performed well, and they have been overly dependent on their star players. Notably, the Royal Challengers Bangalore have been heavily reliant on Virat Kohli, Chris Gayle, and AB de Villiers over the years.

     The lack of a balanced team has always haunted the Royal Challengers Bangalore. They are one of the few IPL teams to have never won the tournament. The Royal Challengers Bangalore have appeared in three finals – 2009, 2011, and 2016 – All of which they lost. The current head coach of the Royal Challengers Bangalore is Simon Katich, while the popular Mike Hesson has been appointed as the Director of Cricket Operations – An excellent choice.

RCB Statistics of the Matches Played So Far 

Season Matches Played Won Lost Tie 
2008144100
200914860
201014770
201114940
201216871
201316970
201414590
201514750
201614860
2017144100
201814680
201914580

Important Events

     Ever since appearing in the IPL 2016 final, the Royal Challengers Bangalore have fared poorly. They finished 8th (Last) in 2017, 6th in 2018, and 8th (Last) in 2019. 

  • The Royal Challengers Bangalore first reached the IPL final, in 2009. The Deccan Chargers scored 143 runs, for the loss of 6 wickets in their allotted quota of 20 overs. The Royal Challengers Bangalore could only manage to score 137 runs, and lost by 6 runs in the process. This was the first of three heartbreaks for the franchise. 
  • They reached the IPL Final for the second time in 2011, losing to the Chennai Super Kings by a mammoth, 58 runs. Murali Vijay scored a scintillating 95 runs, off 58 balls, and was rightly adjudged the ‘Man of the Match’. 
  • Virat Kohli scored a record, 973 runs in the 2016 IPL season, almost taking his team across the line single-handedly. Alas, fortune did not favour the Royal Challengers Bangalore, and they failed to win the 2016 IPL final, losing against the Sunrisers Hyderabad by 8 runs. The Sunrisers Hyderabad batted first and scored a mammoth 208/7 in their allotted 20 overs. David Warner topped the scoring charts, with 68 runs scored off 38 balls. In response, the Royal Challengers Bangalore scored 200 runs, for the loss of 7 wickets. Ben Cutting was awarded the ‘Man of the Match’.
  • Virat Kohli was the Royal Challengers Bangalore’s leading run-scorer in 2019, scoring 464 runs. The team performed awfully, and finished the season at the bottom of the table, winning just 5 games. Yuzvendra Chahal had a good season and picked up 18 wickets in 14 league games. 
  • Their performances have dipped with each coming year, and it is of no surprise that the franchise has released 12 players ahead of the IPL Auction, on the 19th of December, 2019. They have 27.90 Crore Rupees in their purse, and they must spend this money wisely.

Notable Players

     Virat Kohli is the most renowned player in the ranks of the Royal Challengers Bangalore. He has been with the franchise since times immemorial, and he is a vital cog to the team’s batting and leadership group. The Royal Challengers Bangalore are heavily dependent on the runs he scores, and he will continue to be their key player, come the 2020 IPL season. Virat Kohli has been the leading run-scorer for the franchise in the past three seasons.

     Not one to be left behind, AB de Villiers is as vital to the club, as is Virat Kohli. AB de Villiers was the team’s second-highest run-scorer in the last edition of the IPL, scoring 442 runs, at a strike rate of 154.01. He scored a mammoth 26 sixes, and the franchise will need him to score big runs if they are to compete in the IPL next season. Although he has retired from international cricket, AB de Villiers continues to dazzle crowds with his 360-degree stroke play, in T20 leagues. 

     Yuzvendra Chahal is as essential to the franchise, as is Virat Kohli. In the last five IPL seasons, Chahal has emerged as the leading wicket-taker for the Royal Challengers Bangalore three times. His performances for the club led to him being called up to the Indian squad, and he is an essential player for both the club and the Indian Nation Cricket Team. 

      A surprise package in last year’s IPL season, Moeen Ali played very well. No wonder the franchise has retained him. Ali scored 220 runs, at a ferocious strike rate of 165.41. The all-rounder chipped in with 6 crucial wickets as well. 

     While Parthiv Patel does not come with particular acclaim, he is a crucial part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore’s batting order. Patel is often tasked with scoring quick runs in the first Batting Powerplay, and he scored an impressive 393 runs in the 2019 season. Patel struck the ball at a healthy strike rate of 139.18 and often got the Royal Challengers Bangalore off to a good start. He keeps wickets for the club as well, and is often chirpy behind the stumps!

     Umesh Yadav has been no less than a revelation in recent International matches. While Yadav had a poor IPL 2019 by his lofty standards, he will expect to take much more than the 8 wickets he took last season and will look match his tally 20 wickets taken, in the 2018 season.

     Washington Sundar is a regular in the Indian team, and he will be looking at playing more games for the Royal Challengers Bangalore this season. He played just 3 games last season and picked up 4 wickets. Sundar is a talented player, and the Royal Challengers Bangalore need him to perform well this season.

     Shivam Dube played just 4 matches for the club last season and scored a paltry 40 runs. Given that he is now playing in the International arena, and scored his first T20 International half-century against West Indies, the franchisee will be expecting him to play much better this season. Is Dube the answer to the club’s all-rounder woes? Let’s wait and see.

News

The Royal Challengers Bangalore will be looking to strengthen their squad in the IPL 2020 auction, on the 19th of December, 2019. They have released 12 players – Marcus Stoinis, Akshdeep Nath, Heinrich Klaasen, Milind Kumar, Colin De Grandhomme, Prayas Ray Barman, Tim Southee, Kulwant Khejroliya, Himmat Singh, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Shimron Hetymer and Dale Steyn.

     The Royal Challengers Bangalore have retained Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Moeen Ali, Parthiv Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Navdeep Saini, Gurkeerat Mann Singh, Pawan Negi, Mohammed Siraj, Washington Sundar, Umesh Yadav, Devdutt Padikkal and Shivam Dube. Dube has been taking part in international T20 cricket. The franchise hopes that his International exploits will put him in good stead for the upcoming IPL season.  

While Hetymer did impress towards the end of last season, the management does not seem to trust him, leading to his release. The Royal Challengers Bangalore have retained just two foreign players, and they must look to bring in a good all-rounder, and a tearaway fast bowler. They need to strengthen their batting as well, and they must look to good Indian talent and proven players for the same. 

Recent and Upcoming Matches

The Royal Challengers Bangalore did not have a good IPL 2019, having lost their first 6 matches, and winning just 3 of their first 10 games. Nevertheless, they ended the season well, winning 3 games, drawing 1, and losing just the 1 game. The Royal Challengers Bangalore won the last match of their IPL league season in 2019. The Sunrisers Hyderabad posted a respectable total of 175 runs on the board. The Royal Challengers Bangalore chased down the target in just 19.2 overs – Hetmyer top-scoring with 75 runs off 47 deliveries.  

     This must give them confidence, coming into a new IPL season. Fresh faces and new management should inject life into this squad, and they need to perform better if they are to win an IPL trophy finally. While the fixture list,  

     Fans should look forward to matches contested between the Chennai Super Kings, and the Mumbai Indians, at the Chinnaswamy Stadium. The Chennai Super Kings and the Mumbai Indians have retained their strong core of players, and the matches contested with these teams have historically been full-filled affairs.

Squad List

Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Moeen Ali, Parthiv Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Navdeep Saini, Gurkeerat Mann Singh, Pawan Negi, Mohammed Siraj, Umesh Yadav, Washington Sundar, Devdutt Padikkal, and Shivam Dube.

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