Delhi Daredevils (DD) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) will face each other in the last league match of IPL 2016 at the Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Cricket Stadium in Raipur on Sunday. The winner of this game will definitely make it to the IPL 2016 playoffs.
In fact, RCB will move up to the second spot if Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) lose against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the penultimate league match of the IPL 2016 league stages.
It is highly unlikely that Virat Kohli will be making any changes to his side ahead of their game against the Daredevils.
With resounding wins over Gujarat Lions, KKR and Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), RCB have achieved a net run rate better than any other side in the tournament (+0.930). If KKR lose and RCB suffer a defeat at the hands of the Daredevils, RCB should make it to the playoffs because of their net run rate.
RCB will start as the hot favourites against DD and the reason is pretty simple — the form of Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and KL Rahul with the bat. Chris Gayle returned to form just when he was needed and they are looking invincible under the able leadership of Virat Kohli, who has led the side from the front.
Shane Watson and Yuzvendra Chahal have been two of the best bowlers in the RCB squad, and will look to better their numbers against DD. Chris Jordan will also play a crucial role in this winner-take-all encounter in Raipur on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Delhi Daredevils kept their hopes of qualifying for the IPL 2016 playoffs alive after they won a last-ball thriller against Sunrisers Hyderabad in their previous game, played at the same venue couple of days ago. It was Karun Nair who steered DD to a superb victory with his extraordinary innings of 83 from just 59 balls. This young lad is going to be very important when Zaheer Khan and Co square off against Kohli's RCB.
Rishabh Pant up the batting order mean DD's opening issues have somehow been resolved. Thus DD will not want to tinker with their winning combination. Carlos Brathwaite may also retain his place in the playing XI. Delhi will have to choose between Sam Billings and Nathan Coulter-Nile as the latter has not been that impressive. Instead, the Daredevils may just bring in another spinner in the form of Shahbaz Nadeem or Imran Tahir in the team.
Also, Chris Morris will return to the team if gains match fitness ahead of the RCB game. In that case, the change will be simple — Coulter-Nile will make way for Morris in the playing XI.
Delhi Daredevils: Quinton de Kock (wk), Rishabh Pant, Karun Nair, Sanju Samson, JP Duminy, Carlos Brathwaite, Pawan Negi, Chris Morris, Amit Mishra, Zaheer Khan (C), Jayant Yadav.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Chris Gayle, Virat Kohli (C), AB de Villiers, Shane Watson, KL Rahul (wk), Sachin Baby, Stuart Binny, Chris Jordan, S Aravind, Iqbal Abdulla, Yuzvendra Chahal.