The Indian Premier League has already started and there has been some exciting cricket over the last 10 days since the first match in Chennai on April 9. We have seen centuries, five-wicket hauls, close encounters and some sensational victories as well.
This year, much like last year, the competition has been close. Following the first three games of almost every team, only one team has remained unbeaten while others have at least lost a game.
Only two teams have a clean record following the first three games for each side. Sunrisers Hyderabad for 0 wins and Royal Challengers Bangalore for three wins in three.
Kohli’s men have been sensational so far and have swept aside every team that has come in their way. Glenn Maxwell and AB de Villiers have led the way with the bat with the Australian in the race for the ‘Orange Cap’. Maxwell was bought for big money in the IPL 2021 auction by RCB and he is repaying the faith with some sensational performances while De Villiers, who has been assigned a role of a finisher, has been doing the job perfectly.
Harshal Patel has also done well for the team and along with Mohammed Siraj and Kyle Jamieson has managed to keep the runs in check as well.
Captain Kohli much like Devdutt Padikkal have till now not managed to score runs but the wins against Mumbai Indians, Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kolkata Knight Riders without them performing shows the strength of the side.
Here we take a look at the best XI for RCB and why they are looking like a great side this season.
RCB IPL 2021 SQUAD:
Virat Kohli (C), Devdutt Padikkal, Shahbaz Ahmed, Glenn Maxwell, AB de Villiers (WK), Washington Sundar, Daniel Christian, Kyle Jamieson, Harshal Patel, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kane Richardson, Adam Zampa, Sachin Baby, Srikar Bharat, Navdeep Saini, Pavan Deshpande, Mohammed Azharuddeen, Finn Allen, Suyash Prabhudessai, Daniel Sams, Rajat Patidar
BEST PLAYING XI FOR RCB:
Virat Kohli (C), Devdutt Padikkal, Shahbaz Ahmed, Glenn Maxwell, AB de Villiers (WK), Washington Sundar, Daniel Christian, Kyle Jamieson, Harshal Patel, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal.
This team allows Kohli to not only have options with the bat but also plenty of options with the ball if needed. With Christian, Jamieson and Harshal, RCB needs the extra batting down the order if they need it while Sundar, Shahbaz and Chahal provide them with the spin bowling options. There as well, if anyone has a bad day, Kohli can throw the ball to Maxwell, who is more than handy with the ball in hand. The Aussie much like Sundar can bowl in the powerplay, thus allowing Harshal, Siraj and Jamieson to bowl at the death if needed.
In the batting front as well, RCB is well stocked with the likes of Kohli, Padikkal, Maxwell and De Villiers forming a tormenting batting line-up. However, concerns remain following AB. While Sundar, Christian, Shahbaz can hold their own with the bat, the amount of hard-hitting they can do and if they can build an innings following early dismissals, remains to be seen.
Therefore, Kohli and Co. even went with an extra batsman in Rajat Patidar against KKR in their third game at the cost of Christian to shore up the batting. However, this will vary from game to game and the pitch on offer for that particular match.
In this XI, RCB has five solid batters, three all-rounders and eight bowling options with four spinners and three pacers and that variety has helped Kohli and RCB immensely as they continue to be impressive in the IPL so far. With games now moving to Mumbai for the Bengaluru side, expect more runs to be scored and pacers getting some movement and bounce from the Wankhede pitch.
RCB, who are on top of the table, will next play Rajasthan Royals at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Thursday evening.