Royal Challengers Bangalore v Sunrisers Hyderabad
Bengaluru, April 25, 2017
Start time 2000 local (1430 GMT)
Head to head
Last year's finalists faced off in the season's opening fixture in Hyderabad. Fifties from Moises Henriques and Yuvraj Singh helped Sunrisers post 207. That total was 35 runs too many for a Royal Challengers outfit sans Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers.
Sunrisers lead 6-4 and have won their last three games against Royal Challengers. That being said, the hosts lead 3-2 at the Chinnaswamy.
In the news
Royal Challengers are languishing at the bottom of the table after seven games, following their rout for 49 - the lowest total in IPL history - in their last game at Eden Gardens. Sixteen points was the magic number teams needed in IPL 2016 to qualify for the playoff stage and Royal Challengers would need to win six of their last seven matches to get there.
Sunrisers Hyderabad don't have as much to worry about. They were done in by an MS Dhoni special in their previous match - a last-ball finish - but seem to have their overseas four set in stone, especially after Kane Williamson has scored 110 in his first two games at a strike rate of nearly 170. Yuvraj Singh missed the last game due to illness, but should return to the XI at the Chinnaswamy. Ashish Nehra, who has a superlative record against Virat Kohli, may get a look in if Sunrisers pay attention to the numbers.
The likely XIs
Royal Challengers Bangalore 1 Virat Kohli (capt), 2 Chris Gayle, 3 AB de Villiers, 4 Mandeep Singh, 5 Kedar Jadhav (wk), 6 Stuart Binny, 7 Pawan Negi, 8 Samuel Badree, 9 Tymal Mills, 10 S Aravind, 11 Yuzvendra Chahal
Sunrisers Hyderabad 1 David Warner (capt), 2 Shikhar Dhawan, 3 Kane Williamson, 4 Moises Henriques, 5 Yuvraj Singh, 6 Naman Ojha (wk), 7 Deepak Hooda, 8 Rashid Khan, 9 Siddarth Kaul/Ashish Nehra, 10 Mohammed Siraj, 11 Bhuvneshwar Kumar
Sunrisers Hyderabad may give Ashish Nehra a start and a shot with the new ball - he is the only bowler in the IPL to dismiss Virat Kohli more than four times (six).
Stats that matter
Sunrisers have lost all three of their away games this season. Royal Challengers, though, no longer can call the Chinnaswamy their fortress. They have lost two of their three matches at home.
Before 2017, the Chinnaswamy had the highest run rate (8.61) among all grounds. This season, it has the lowest run rate (7.41). Alternatively, Bangalore had the worst average (28.37) for bowlers before 2017. This year, it has favoured the bowlers the most among all venues - a wicket falls every 19.57 runs. Bengaluru is also the only venue to have not seen a 180-plus total this season.
Royal Challengers' middle-order batsmen have the worst average among all teams in 2017. Their Nos. 4 through 7 average 18.45 and have the poorest strike-rate (125.51).
Moises Henriques is one of two batsmen - the other being Nitish Rana - to have struck three fifties this season. He has scored 193 in six innings at an average of 64.33. He has already gone past his tally from 15 innings in 2016 - 182.
Ashish Nehra has dismissed Kohli six times in 54 balls. Kohli has had a hard time getting runs off his senior from Delhi: he has only scored 60. For context, no other bowler has dismissed Kohli more than four times in the IPL.
Kohli's batting partners enjoy facing the Sunrisers bowlers, though. De Villiers has scored 61 runs off 28 balls against Nehra while Gayle has scored 104 runs off 70 deliveries off the season's leading wicket-taker, Bhuvneshwar Kumar.