Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on Monday qualified for the playoffs despite suffering a defeat against Delhi Capitals (DC) in match no. 55 of Indian Premier League 2020. With this, three of the four IPL playoff berths have been confirmed. The other two being Mumbai Indians (MI) and Delhi Capitals (DC), who are no.1 and 2 in the points table respectively.
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The two sides will lock horns on November 5 in the first qualifiers of the tournament. As for RCB, they are yet to get an opponent for the eliminator match on November 5.
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) are bidding four the remaining IPL berth. While KKR have 14 points, SRH will eye win when they play MI. If the David Warner side wins, they will qualify for the playoffs, given their positive run-rate.
However, the most pressing question is who would RCB want as their opponent?
IPL 2020: RCB’s performance against KKR and SRH
Given the equation in IPL 2020, RCB will want Kolkata Knight Riders to qualify for the playoffs and meet them in the Eliminator 1, here’s why:
Bangalore and Kolkata have faced each other twice in IPL 2020. On both occasions RCB emerged victorious against the inconsistent KKR side.
SRH, on the other hand, have won one and lost one. However, unlike KKR, SRH have given RCB a run for their money this season, despite their middle-order woes.
Hence the Virat Kohli-led side will have a psychological advantage over the Eoin Morgan’s team if they meet in the Eliminator.
KKR: Kolkata have been inconsistent with their performance in IPL 2020 and they are yet to find a proper opening pair for the team as they are still experimenting with it. Moreover, their middle order is also unreliable and team is more or less dependent on their skipper Eoin Morgan for finishing off the matches. Even KKR’s pinch hitter Andre Russell has struggled with poor form throughout the season which add to their batting woes.
SRH: Sunrisers Hyderabad were inconsistent in the first half of the IPL 2020, however, the David Warner-led side pulled up their socks in the second half to remain in the race of playoffs. Moreover, the rich form of Wriddhiman Saha and addition of Jason Holder have provided depth to their batting line up, while their bowling unit has been effective in both – picking wickets and controlling the flow of runs.
So, given their recent form, past records and stats, RCB will fancy their chances against KKR in the eliminator, but for that Sunrisers Hyderabad will have to lose against Mumbai Indians, because if they beat the defending champions in their last group stage match then they will make it to the playoffs on the basis of better net run rate than KKR.