Bangalore Royal Challengers in do-or-die situation

Published: Monday, May 12, 2008, 3:35 [IST]
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Mohali: With their backs to the wall, the Bangalore Royal Challengers find themselves in a must-win situation, when they take on the bouyant Mohali Kings XI in their IPL away tie at the PCA Stadium on Monday.

Dravid will be hoping that the out-of-sorts batsmen would turn it on against the formidable attack of the local outfit.

"From now on, we are playing for pride. There are six games left and we have nothing to lose," Dravid said ahead of the match. He admitted that the batting had been below par and was an area of concern for the team as it had cost them quite a few games.

Disappointed at losing the last game against the Knight Riders by five runs, Dravid said that the team had suffered narrow defeats in at least three encounters, which was the reason his team never got any momentum in the tournament.

"The game changes very quickly in the T20 format. It has happened a couple of times for us. We are confident about tomorrow's match as we have nothing to lose," Dravid added.

B'lore batting line-up which looks pretty solid for a Test match has miserably failed to deliver the goods in the ultra-abridged version of the sport.

T20 cricket is a simple game and you need not have to be a Wrangler to work out the things. All B'lore need to do is give the hitters more strike by promoting the young attacking batsmen like White, Misbah and Virat Kohli up the order.

Dravid-led side have to plug in the holes which cost them a hoard of games. Change bowlers have failed to maintain the early momentum provided by new-ball bowlers Steyn and Zaheer. Play local seamer N C Aiyappa instead of expensive Kumble for pacers have done well mixing up the deliveries with slower ones and short pitch stuff prompting the batsmen play backfoot. Stop leaking 'extra' runs in the death overs. Sloppy work on field is hurting B'lore a lot and this is one area B'lore unit need to work on.

On the other hand Mohali Kings, who made a strong comeback after a poor start to their campaign, has a unit playing some good cricket consistantly. The young side has thrived on the fine batsmanship from Shaun Marsh, Hopes, Pathan, Sarwan among others and good work from their seamers up front.

It appears to be a cracker in offing with B'lore keen to turn tables on and Mohali to push their claim for semis' berth.

Squads (probables):

Bangalore: J Arunkumar, Virat Kohli, Mark Boucher (wk), Cameron White, Misbah, Rahul Dravid (capt), Praveen Kumar,  Zaheer Khan, Vinay Kumar, Dale Steyn and N C Aiyappa.

Mohali Kings XI: Shaun Marsh, James Hopes, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Yuvraj Singh (capt), Mahela Jayawardene, Irfan Pathan, Piyush Chawla, Uday Kaul (wk), Sreesanth, VRV Singh and Gagandeep Singh.


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