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It �s assessment time for RCB: Vettori

Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) spinner Daniel Vettori hopes their Indian Premier League opening match against Mumbai Indians (MI) here today will give them a chance to judge where they stand and what would be their course of action during the tournament.

“Mumbai Indians have got strength, all up and down the lineup. It is a great opening game for us. It will give us real test of where we are early on and we can assess how we can go in this competition depending on how we perform against the Mumbai outfit,” said Vettori.


RCB’s Daniel Vettori (right) celebrates the wicket of Ambati Rayudu during their match against MI in Chennai in 2010. Pic/mid day archives

The former RCB captain lavished praise on current skipper Virat Kohli saying that he is incredibly committed and has an outstanding quality to be a leader.
“Hopefully, the senior guys like me, AB (de Villiers) and Chris Gayle can support him (Kohli),” said Vettori.

“I think he is going to do a great job,” he added.

On former RCB skipper Anil Kumble joining Mumbai Indians as the chief mentor, Vettori said, “Anil has obviously been a part of RCB and has done a great job. Everyone moves on and he is not here with us this season. It’s early days and may be we could come back in a few weeks and then talk about that.”

RCB have a balanced side and will look to avoid their over-reliance on foreign recruits like Chris Gayle, Tillakaratne Dilshan and De Villiers.

Meanwhile, after two poor seasons in the beginning, MI showed their true skills only in the third edition in 2010 when they reached the final before losing to Chennai Super Kings.

In the subsequent two seasons, they managed to reach the last four stage before, again, losing out. However, this time the Ricky Ponting factor might just do the trick. The Aussie will lead the side comprising Sachin Tendulkar, Lasith Malinga, Kieron Pollard, Harbhajan Singh, Ambati Rayudu and Rohit Sharma.  

Ponting’s wishlist
>> Sachin Tendulkar scores a ton
>> The skipper himself continues his Big Bash League form
>> Kieron Pollard plays a cameo
>> Early exit of Chris Gayle
>> No-Malinga factor doesn’t prove costly

Kohli’s wishlist
>> Gayle provides a dream start
>> AB de Villiers carries his international form to the IPL
>> Zaheer Khan does not show any signs of breaking down
>> Spinners bowl economically
>> Mumbai’s star studded batting line-up does not click 

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