The Punjab Kings are on shaky ground with respect to their qualification chances for the Tata IPL 2022 playoffs and will attempt to strengthen the same when they take on the Royal Challengers Bangalore at Mumbai’s Brabourne Stadium on Friday night.
While the Kings with 10 points are in eighth place in the Tata IPL points table, the Challengers are in fourth position with 14 points.
Ahead of this important encounter, below are a few points to note.
In the last five games, the Punjab Kings have won two and lost three alternatively. The most recent match resulted in a six-wicket loss against the Rajasthan Royals. With yet another Royal challenge on the cards, the Kings will look to seal a much-necessary win.
The RCB also have won two games and lost three in their last five matches. However, their most recent games have been victories, with their last one being a massive 67-run win. They will look to continue their good form and strengthen their position in the top-four of the points table.
PBKS - L, W, L, W, L
RCB - L, L, L, W, W
The Rajapaksa-Hasaranga battle
When PBKS faced RCB in their Tata IPL 2022 opener, two Sri Lankans - Bhanuka Rajapaksa and Wanindu Hasaranga - took the field for PBKS and RCB respectively. Rajapaksa, who enjoyed an impactful debut with 43 (22), was able to crack the wily Hasaranga’s bowling.
Rajapaksa faced 13 deliveries from Hasaranga and scored 22 runs, including two sixes and a four to emerge the winner of this contest. When these two take the field against each other once again, it will be an interesting match-up to watch out for.
The teams’ previous encounter
Their first encounter of this Tata IPL season was a high-scoring affair. The Challengers, set to bat first, ensured they had 205/2 on board at the end of 20 overs with 88* (57) from captain Faf du Plessis.
However, Shikhar Dhawan’s 43 (29) along with Rajapaksa’s stellar debut knock helped the Kings lay a good foundation for the chase. Odean Smith helped PBKS finish it off with 25* (8) to earn the team a five-wicket win.
Playing at Brabourne
The Punjab Kings have played three games at the Brabourne Stadium so far, winning against the Chennai Super Kings by 54 runs, and losing to Gujarat Titans and to Delhi capitals by six and nine wickets respectively.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore have played two matches at the Brabourne Stadium and lost both - one to SRH by nine wickets where they registered the season’s lowest score of 68, and one to the Titans by six wickets. PBKS will be adamant on keeping RCB’s wins at Brabourne at zero.
So gear up for a Friday night in front of your screens to watch the Kings take on the Royal Challengers in a crucial clash.