RPS bounce back against RCB


As two of the pre-tournament favourites Rising Pune Supergiant and Royal Challengers Bangalore would be disappointed with their IPL form so far.

RPS were able to bounce back though by achieving a record breaking defence at the Chinnaswamy stadium.

The lowest total ever successfully defended against RCB at their Bangalore stronghold had been 165 and RPS could only manage 161/8 on a slow surface.

Their innings was well set up by openers Rahul Tripathi (31) and Ajinkya Rahane (30) before patient knocks from Steve Smith (27 off 24 balls) and MS Dhoni (28 off 25 balls) helped RPS set a platform for a late launch.

Manoj Tiwary (27 off 11 balls) was in the end the only man to provide any acceleration at the death with Dan Christian (1) going cheaply before Adam Milne accounted for Ben Stokes (2) and Shardul Thakur (0) off successive balls.

Milne would end as the pick of the bowlers with figures of 2 for 27 from his four overs.

The target looked decidedly gettable for RCB especially when they had Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers batting together.

Mandeep Singh (0) had gone early to Thakur to bring the pair together and they would add 37 for the second wicket before Stokes undid Kohli (28) with a bouncer.

Imran Tahir provided the vital wicket for RPS, nipping out his international skipper De Villiers for 29 to leave RCB 70 for 3.

Kedhar Jadav (18) and Shane Watson (14) struggled to get going and fell in successive overs to Jaydev Unadkat and Stokes respectively.

Stuart Binny (18 off 8 balls) and Pawan Negi (11 of 7 balls) tried to get on with things but both were dismissed by Thakur in the 18th over of the chase ending the game as a contest.

Samuel Badree (0) didn’t last long departing in the 19th over after being bowled by Unadkat.

In his final over Stokes picked up the wicket of Milne to claim his third scalp and end as the pick of the RPS bowlers with his figures of 3 for 18.

RPS won by 27 runs to move above RCB into sixth place on four points, four points behind log leaders the Mumbai Indians.