KL Rahul’s elegance and Quinton de Kock’s flamboyance will be pitted against the finishing skills of Dinesh Karthik and Glenn Maxwell when Lucknow Super Giants and Royal Challengers Bangalore clash in the IPL here on Tuesday.
LSG and RCB head into the match after wins over Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals, respectively and both teams, who have eight points from six outings, would be keen to continue their winning streak.
Up against the second-placed Super Giants, RCB will need to address their top-order woes. While skipper Faf du Plessis has failed to fire since the opening game, opener Anuj Rawat has looked scratchy.
Virat Kohli continues to have a frustrating season. Despite looking in good form, the former RCB captain has failed to get the big runs.
However, the arrival of Maxwell has strengthened the side. The Australian all-rounder blasted 55 of 34 balls to get the momentum going in the chase against DC.
Meanhwile, Karthik is revelling in his role as a finisher, single-handedly winning matches for his new side.
The seasoned wicketkeeper batter has not put a foot wrong in the ongoing season, playing some of the finest knocks as he bids to make a comeback for the national team. He has been instrumental in RCB’s rise into the top four of the league table.
Engineer-turned cricketer Shahbaz Ahmed too has impressed with his batting so far.
On the bowling front, Josh Hazlewood bowled an exceptional spell against DC that swayed the match in RCB’s favour and the Australian pacer would be eager to continue in the same vein.
Alongside Hazlewood, Sri Lankan leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga will be key in stopping Rahul and Co while death overs specialist Harshal Patel will also have to play his role to perfection if RCB aim to contain a powerful LSG batting unit.
On the other hand, Rahul (235 runs) has led the new entrants admirably. The skipper himself is in sublime form. He registered his maiden century of the season against Mumbai and sits only behind Rajasthan Royals’ Jos Buttler (272 runs) in the leading run-scorer chart.
LSG also have enough fire power in de Kock, who has displayed imperious form in recent games, young Ayush Badoni, the big-hitting Deepak Hooda and Krunal Pandya to name a few.
The new-entrants have further been bolstered by the addition of the multi-talented duo of Jason Holder and Marcus Stoinis. The two adding more depth in both bowling and batting.
The pace-spin duo of Avesh Khan and Ravi Bishnoi have managed to hold their own against some of the most established names in T20 cricket.
Lucknow Super Giants: KL Rahul (c), Manan Vohra, Evin Lewis, Manish Pandey, Quinton De Kock, Ravi Bishnoi, Dushmantha Chameera, Shahbaz Nadeem, Mohsin Khan, Mayank Yadav, Ankit Rajpoot, Avesh Khan, Andrew Tye, Marcus Stoinis, Kyle Mayers, Karan Sharma, Krishnappa Gowtham, Ayush Badoni, Deepak Hooda, Krunal Pandya, Jason Holder.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Virat Kohli, Glenn Maxwell, Mohammed Siraj, Faf du Plessis, Harshal Patel, Wanindu Hasaranga, Dinesh Karthik, Josh Hazlewood, Shahbaz Ahmed, Anuj Rawat, Akash Deep, Mahipal Lomror, Finn Allen, Sherfane Rutherford, Jason Behrendorff, Suyash Prabhudesai, Chama Milind, Aneeshwar Gautam, Karn Sharma, David Willey, Rajat Patidar, Siddharth Kaul.
Match starts at 7.30 PM