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How Royal Challengers Bangalore can still reach the playoffs

Virat Kohli is over the moon as a Kings XI Punjab wicket falls BCCI

Though Royal Challengers Bangalore are at the bottom of the table with just eight points, there are still a couple of ways by which they can reach the playoffs.

The first condition, of course, is that they win their remaining two games, which gives them 12 points. That would obviously mean a loss each for Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad, which will mean Royals reach a maximum of 12 points, that if they beat Delhi Capitals.

The second condition is that Sunrisers must lose to Mumbai Indians on May 2, and stay on 12 points.

Whoever wins the Kings XI Punjab v Kolkata Knight Riders match must then lose their final game. Kings XI play theirs at home against Chennai Super Kings, while Knight Riders play theirs away, in Mumbai.

The winners of the Kings XI v Knight Riders game will then have 12 points, while the losers will have either 10 or 12 points depending on the result of their final game.

So, basically, if Royal Challengers win their final two games, Sunrisers lose theirs, Royals beat Capitals, the Kings XI v Knight Riders winners lose their final game and the losers win theirs, then five teams - Royals, Royal Challengers, Kings XI, Sunrisers and Knight Riders - will be on 12 points, leaving net run-rate to decide who qualify for the playoffs.

The best-case scenario for Royal Challengers is (a) Royals lose to Capitals, and (b) Kings XI and Knight Riders both lose their final games. That will leave just three teams on 12 points: Sunrisers, Royal Challengers and the winners of Kings XI v Knight Riders, while the other two teams will be on 10.

The other part, though, is that Royal Challengers need to get their net run-rate up. It's currently the lowest (-0.694), so they need to win their remaining two games by big margins and hope the teams around them lose by big margins too. Sunrisers' net run-rate of +0.709 is a big problem for them. They not only have to beat Sunrisers by a big margin but hope Mumbai do too, so that net run-rate slides. Knight Riders also have a positive net run-rate (+0.1), so ideally Royal Challengers would want Kings XI to beat them and stop them getting to 12 points. If Royal Challengers, Kings XI and Sunrisers are the teams to finish on 12 points, then there's some hope for Royal Challengers, but again, only if Sunrisers lose their last two emphatically.