The Royal Challengers Bangalore will hope to play their best cricket while under pressure when they host the Gujarat Lions on Saturday. While GL can go top of the table with a win, this is a much more important match for RCB, who must win to stay in the hunt for the playoff places.
Following their loss to the Mumbai Indians, RCB find themselves in a simple-enough-to-understand position – win all their remaining matches. On paper, they certainly have the talent and ability to do just that.
In a format made for the batsmen and on a pitch, in Bengaluru, that is heaven on earth for the willow-wielders, RCB really should be doing better than they have done at home this season, particularly since their batting lineup boasts of Virat Kohli, Chris Gayle, AB De Villiers and Shane Watson.
However, the batting alone will not win RCB matches, and therein lies the problem. Too many times in IPL 2016, RCB have been let down by their bowlers – even if that was not the case in the last match, against the Mumbai Indians -- and that needs to change if they are to go on a four-match winning run and take their place in the top four.
"We have to win the remaining four games and we have nothing to lose," RCB spinner Yuzvendra Chahal told IPL's official website. This tournament is now like the knockouts for us. If we lose one match, we will be out.
"We are giving away way too many runs in the last four overs. In many matches we have given away runs in the Powerplay as well. Even in the last match (against the Mumbai Indians) we lost the match in the last three overs. I believe that if we bowl well in the death overs, we will start winning."
While RCB need to bounce back from a heavy defeat to MI, for the Gujarat Lions this will be all about reloading, as the team come off a bit of a break. However, GL will have to try and go back to the top of the IPL 2016 points table without their captain Suresh Raina, who is still in the Netherlands as he awaits the birth of his baby.
Brendon McCullum is expected to be the captain for this match, and with the team just a win away from confirming their place in the top four, Gujarat Lions coach Brad Hodge is confident his side have the ammunition to gun down RCB.
"We have got most bases covered," Hodge was quoted as saying by IPL's official website. We have a fairly good defensive bowling attack to prevent teams from scoring big. We also have a pretty dynamic batting line-up that can chase down big scores. We have similar powers that RCB do and we have a good bowling to boot."
Where to Watch Live
RCB vs GL is scheduled for a 4 p.m. IST (11.30 a.m. BST, 6.30 a.m. ET) start. Below are the TV and live stream online options.
Middle East and North Africa: TV: OSN Sports Cricket. Live Streaming: OSN Cricket Play.
South Africa and Sub Saharan Africa: TV: Supersport. Live Streaming: Supersport Live Video.
USA: TV: ESPN. Live streaming: Watch ESPN.
Canada: TV: Sportsnet. Live Streaming: Watch Sportsnet.
International (ROW): Cricketgateway.