Sharjah: Unbeaten so far, Royal Challengers Bangalore would be eyeing a hat-trick of wins to go to the top of points table even as Kolkata Knight Riders look to shake off their last match's disappointment when the two sides clash against each other in an IPL match here today.
RCB skipper Virat Kohli
The star-studded Bangalore, which boast of some of the most feared Twenty20 batsmen in their line-up, have won both their games so far.
Gayle expected to be fit
The results have come despite the absence of the destructive Chris Gayle, who has been nursing a sore back. He, however, is expected to be fit for today's match.
In his absence, the likes of Yuvraj Singh, Parthiv Patel and AB de Villiers have made quite a statement with their efforts to show that the days of RCB being called a one-man show are over.
A slight concern has been skipper Virat Kohli, who is yet to hit the groove, but given his reputation, the lean patch is not expected to last too long.
Kolkata too have a good line-up at their disposal and it too has fared well. Even though there aren't any big stars to boast of but the likes of Manish Pandey and Robin Uthappa have made their presence felt.
However, more would be expected of established players such as skipper Gautam Gambhir and Jacques Kallis.
> Kolkata Knight Riders' selection of Sachithra Senanayake proved a shrewd move on a slow surface, as he and Lakshmipathy Balaji made run-scoring difficult upfront
> Sunil Narine (4-22) took the crucial wicket of Chris Gayle and slowed Royal Challengers Bangalore at the end of their innings
> Defending a modest target of 116, Royals needed their bowling unit to deliver. Ravi Rampaul had Manvinder Bisla caught at point off the second ball. He should have accounted for Kallis too, but Mithun Manhas badly misjudged the catch at fine leg, running in before realising he had overrun! Capitalising on his let off, Kallis (41) anchored the chase and gave Knight Riders a comfortable five-wicket win
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