Below par Royal Challengers Bangalore are set to host Kolkata Knight Riders at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Sunday. RCB are already out of the Playoffs race, but KKR are looking to climb up the table by beating Virat Kohli's team. And looking at the home team's performance in IPL 2017, KKR are the clear favourites going into this match.
However, RCB will be a determined unit on Sunday with nothing to lose and a point or two to prove. Virat's men will go all guns blazing against Kolkata Knight Riders to give some dignity to their 2017 campaign.
Here is a look at how the match could go in IPL 2017
If KKR bat first
Sunil Narine repeats his magic with the bat and gets his team off to a flier. He, alongside Gambhir, scores 58 runs in 6 overs without losing a wicket. Narine gets out in the ninth over scoring a quickfire 28-ball 49.
Then, Gambhir takes control of the innings and looks in dangerous form. Robin Uthappa also catches on. The duo score runs with ease, and Kohli is left clueless. Every bowler is dispatched to the ropes with utter ease.
The duo scores 139 in 15 overs, and are well on course for 200. But two wickets in four balls from Adam Milne puts KKR on backfoot. However, Manish Pandey and Yusuf Pathan steer the team to a good total of 186 runs.
Openers Kohli and Chris Gayle walk to the crease with intent. Kohli hits the first ball he faces for a boundary and Gayle does even better; six, straight down the ground. It is for the first time in IPL 2017, RCB are playing some entertaining cricket, but then tragedy strikes, Kohli is run out, and Gayle follows next.
RCB are 61 runs in 6.5 overs for the loss of two wickets. The poor season of RCB continues as Mandeep Singh and Pawan Negi, who was promoted up the order as a pinch-hitter, fall cheaply. Score – 86/4 in 10.2 overs.
All eyes are on AB De Villiers, who seems to be in an ominous mood. He hits some massive sixes, including one that goes out of the park. His innings is brought to an end by Chris Woakes' toe crusher.
From there on, they collapse like a pack of cards and are all out for 150 runs.
If RCB bat first
Gayle and Kohli walk to the middle. The openers start well, but Gayle fails to capitalise on a good start. He is out in the fourth over.
Kohli and ABD are in good touch and are dealing in boundaries. The Indian skipper is taking the attack to KKR bowlers before he gets trapped leg before. He is shocked by the umpire's decision. Replays suggest the ball was missing the wickets.
Meanwhile, ABD is looking good. Alongside Mandeep, the two help RCB get past 100 runs in the 12th over. Mandeep falls, followed by Kedar Jadhav. ABD is running out of partners and is caught in the deep after scoring 49 runs.
The lower order helps RCB put 168 runs on the board.
KKR, a strong chasing side, start brilliantly with an array of fours and sixes by Narine and Gambhir. The openers are making a mockery of the target, scoring 75 runs in the Powerplay.
Narine gets clean bowled. Gambhir and Uthappa are enjoying their time in the middle. They are also seen cracking some jokes between the overs. Milne sends back Uthappa, but KKR have already crossed the 100-run mark in the 12th over.
Pandey joins Gambhir on the other end and hits some lusty blows. The duo finishes the game for KKR with overs to spare.