T20 2018: Pressure only on Bangalore
Desperate to win all their remaining four games to qualify for playoffs, Virat Kohli & Co face already-knocked out Delhi at Kotla today
Bangalore skipper Virat Kohli (right) celebrates the wicket of Chennai batsman Dhruv Shorey with all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme and teammates during an IPL tie at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune recently. Pic/AFP
Like Delhi, Bangalore have been high on promise but low on deliverance. Despite possessing quality players over the last decade they are yet to win a title. Both teams are currently languishing at the bottom of the points table, with Daredevils already out of the fray, while Bangalore just a defeat away from joining them on the sidelines.
Bangalore skipper Virat Kohli will have just two words, 'staying alive', humming in his mind when the teams clash at the Kotla tonight. Despite being a low-key affair, there is little doubt that it will generate enough excitement for fans to fill up the stands.
Kohli's final shot at home
For Delhi lad Kohli, it is a homecoming one for the final time this season before he embarks on a long overseas campaign. Of course, with Bangalore in the danger zone as far as IPL is concerned, these overseas assignments will be far from his mind right now. His priority is to see Bangalore still make it to the playoffs despite the heavy odds. They have to win each of their four remaining games and hope that the results of the other matches go their way. Bangalore's England all-rounder Chris Woakes did not discount their chances as yet. "If we win our four matches we can still make it. We were not 100 per cent in many of the games and that's why we are in this position. Hopefully, we can still retrieve our situation," he said.
Delhi, on the other hand, have nothing to lose and can only play party-poopers. They have exciting young players in Rishabh Pant, Prithvi Shaw and skipper Shreyas Iyer. They will take any opportunity to excel on a stage that will give their career a boost.
Delhi eager to finish on a high
Delhi's assistant coach James Hopes said that the team is still upbeat and looking to end the competition on a high. "We have trained hard during the season, but we have had more downs than ups. The results are not what we had expected. We are yet to put up a complete performance despite working hard. It is indeed frustrating," he said.
Now, it's up to Kohli & Co. to take advantage of the downcast rivals and ensure that Bangalore remain in contention till the end. He knows well that one good match can still change the scenario for them.
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