Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) will take on the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in their first home game on Monday, 13 April.
Having won their first match against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), RCB have made a perfect start to the tournament. On the other hand, SRH are yet to find a victory as they lost their opening match against the formidable Chennai Super Kings, courtesy a blitzkreig from Brendon McCullum.
RCB seemed to have restored balance into their side, which they have been looking for in the past few seasons. SRH have players with potential but they will have to play some good cricket in order to register a win against RCB. Here are some key battles one can expect in this match:
Virat Kohli vs Trent Boult: Kohli did not have much of an impact in his first game against the KKR but will look to score some runs against SRH. It will not be easy as he will have to face this fast left-arm bowler from New Zealand, Trent Boult who troubled almost all the batsmen throughout the recently concluded ICC World Cup. Although, he too did not have a great match with the ball against CSK as he too was taken for plenty as McCullum was in a devastating mood but he would look to bounce back in this match against RCB.
David Warner vs Varun Aaron: Warner's knock of 53 runs went in vain as no other batsman supported him in that chase against CSK. He looks in good touch and this time he would want to be on the winning side. Aaron on the other hand, bowled with good pace and bounce. If he maintains line and length in and around that corridor of uncertainty outside the off stump, he can cause some serious trouble to Warner who has his weak zone in that area.
Shikhar Dhawan vs Harshal Patel: Dhawan sarted off well in that chase against CSK but got out to loosner from Mohit Sharma. He was in flying form during the World Cup and he would like to bring that momentum into this all important match against RCB. Harshal Patel was varying his pace against the KKR batsmen but unfortunately he was taken for a lot of runs. But he picked up the precious wicket of Surya Kumar Yadav when he deceived him with his slower delivery. Patel is going to be difficult customer to deal with and therefore Dhawan has to be watchful while playing him.
RCB will have the upper edge as they will be backed by their home crowd and they would look to continue winning momentum at home. On the other hand, SRH will look for their first victory of their IPL campaign. It should be an interesting encounter.