Royal Challengers v Super Kings, IPL 2012, Bangalore April 24, 2012

Can Bangalore extend winning run?

Match facts

Wednesday, April 25, Bangalore
Start time 2000 (1430 GMT)

Big Picture

Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore have a South African player each to thank for getting their campaigns on track after both sides had middling starts to the season. Defending champions Super Kings lost two of their first three games while Royal Challengers had a run of three straight losses. Faf du Plessis and AB de Villiers have had a role to play in every win their sides have registered. Du Plessis has been solid at the top of the order with three brisk half-centuries while de Villiers, even when he's not made a fifty, has been instrumental in getting his team home under pressure, as he did against Pune Warriors.

Royal Challengers' batting has been more destructive with the added advantage of having Chris Gayle. Super Kings have had the edge in bowling, though, with Royal Challengers conceding 45 in the last two overs to lose a game they had almost won after posting 205 against the former in Chennai. Payback will be on Royal Challengers' minds for their home game after three consecutive wins, but will their bowling hold up?

Form guide

Royal Challengers Bangalore WWWLL
Chennai Super Kings WWLWL

Player to watch

While the focus has been on Gayle, AB de Villiers has scored nearly as many runs as the former at a better strike-rate, 164.02 against 152.43. He has been incredibly proficient at scoring runs behind square on both sides of the wicket. Scoops and reverse-hits have fetched him plenty of boundaries. Royal Challengers have lost all three games in which he has failed.

Stats and trivia

  • Gayle has hit the most number of sixes so far this season - 19.

  • Royal Challengers have lost their last three games against Super Kings.


    "Virat played very well in Chennai, and we are very new into the season. Virat's one of the best players in the world, so he is going to come good and win us a couple of games before this tournament is over."
    Daniel Vettori, the Royal Challengers captain, is not worried about Virat Kohli's lean run so far

    Abhishek Purohit is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo