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‘Nowhere to hide’

Updated on: 17 April,2024 08:01 AM IST  |  Bangalore
R Kaushik |

RCB skipper Faf du Plessis reveals what happens to a side when it is down on confidence, after Bangalore franchise suffer fifth consecutive loss; Sunrisers cock-a-hoop

‘Nowhere to hide’

RCB skipper Faf du Plessis after being hit by a Pat Cummins delivery in the match against SRH in Bangalore on Monday. Pic/PTI

Records of various hues were shattered on a boundary-drenched night at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium, which produced the most runs ever in a T20 game, among other things on Monday.

Royal Challengers Bengaluru’s spirited tally of 262 for seven, the most in a 20-over chase ever, fell 25 short of Sunrisers Hyderabad’s IPL high 287 for three, the teams combining to provide entertainment of the highest order to a gob-smacked gathering while stacking up a ridiculous 559 runs.

Head on fire

Sunrisers Hyderabad’s Travis Head was the standout performer on a night of blazing strokeplay with a 39-ball century, the fourth fastest in all IPLs, though RCB replied in kind through their captain Faf du Plessis, who sprinted to 62 off 28, and the ageless Dinesh Karthik, who rounded off the entertainment with seven 
humongous sixes in a manic 35-ball 83.

“When your confidence is low, there’s nowhere to hide in the game,” conceded Du Plessis after RCB slid to their fifth consecutive loss. With just one win from seven, they hardly have a chance of making the playoffs. SRH, who had stacked up 277 for three against Mumbai Indians three weeks back, bested their own record for the highest IPL total in a spectacular exhibition of unchecked aggression. “I was really pleased with the way I was able to move with the ball today,” Head, the Player of the Match for his game-defining 41-ball 102, was to say later.

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“In the last couple of games, I was slightly off it, I did not execute the way I would have liked. But today, especially in the Powerplay, the way I was able to strike the ball, I was pleased with the work I did.”

After a quiet first over from Will Jacks which yielded only five, SRH amassed 20 from the next, bowled by strapping left-arm quick Reece Topley. “The second ball, which I whipped over midwicket [for four], it felt like I was in a really stable position. And then the next ball I was able to get one back over the top to the sightscreen, which is where I try to target,” Head pointed out. “Those probably were the two, in particular, when I knew I was moving well and seeing the ball well.”

Karthik’s fightback

RCB began like a house on fire in their mountainesque chase, openers Du Plessis and Virat Kohli, dropped in the first over by Abhishek Sharma, putting on 80 in just 38 balls. The tempo was impossible to sustain and once Kohli was bowled trying to slog-sweep  it got tougher. From 80 without loss, the hosts slumped to 122 for five, but Karthik ensured there was no tame surrender with an innings that Head termed “quite brilliant.”

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