The setting sun burns RCB’s two best prospects

Devdutt Padikkal slapped on a delivery from Rashid Khan for cover and ran without looking at his partner. Glenn Maxwell responded and it was an error in judgment on the part of both drummers. Sunrisers Hyderabad skipper Kane Williamson stabbed the ball and sent the Australian off with a direct hit.

It was difficult to score points on slow Abu Dhabi pitch, but Maxwell’s punching prowess made the step factor redundant – he was scoring at a 160 strike rate. And although the Royal Challengers Bangalore were still watching a requested rate of nearly nine points. On top of that, a few more deliveries for the Australian would have likely sealed the deal for his team. In the end, his dismissal turned out to be a turning point. It was not easy for a new drummer, even for someone of the caliber of AB de Villiers, to force the rhythm on this surface straight away. Padikkal, on the other end, got into a rut, with a hit rate of less than 80 before a grip in Khan’s depths put him out of his misery. In the end, RCB missed by four points, which ended their hopes of finishing in the top two.

SRH bowlers shine

The sunrise season was long over and dusted off. Still, Williamson inspired his troops to play for pride. Their bowling alley also offered a big picture, ahead of the T20 World Cup. Bhuvneshwar Kumar looked at a good pace throughout his four overs, conceding 25 points and taking the wicket off Kohli. Once again, the RCB skipper’s head fell a bit, coming out of the ball line, an issue he will need to sort out before the ICC mega event.

Kumar’s final, as he defended 13 points against de Villiers, was also very good, despite a six. Jason Holder had a great penultimate shot, removing the dangerous Shahbaz Ahmed and making things more difficult for RCB. But the bowler who filled viewers’ senses was Umran Malik. On a slow bridge, he hit 152 km / h, squeezing the beaters and surprising Maxwell with an ugly bouncer. The 21-year-old fast pitcher from Jammu and Kashmir has a future Indian player written about him if he doesn’t get lost.

Maxwell form

Looking back, given the slowness of the area, Kohli’s decision to strike second was a bad decision. SRH’s total of 141 was difficult as the ball did not hit the bat and the degree of difficulty for the batsmen increased with each pass. Maxwell’s brain and muscles – 40 out of 25 balls – largely kept RCB in the race. However, regardless of the loss in this game, his form will encourage the franchise, going into knockouts.

This is how Maxwell has evolved lately: 56 of 37 balls against the Indians of Mumbai, 50 of 30 balls against Rajasthan Royals and 57 of 33 balls against Punjab Kings. The upsurge in RCB’s form coincided with Maxwell’s golden run. Three wins on the spin before this match takes them to the Playoffs.

When RCB roped Maxwell for Rs 14.25 crore at the 2021 IPL auction, the Australian was going through a rough patch, battling mental health issues. He later spoke publicly about Kohli’s support for him. The 32-year-old has since paid off his debt.

Partnership bat

A 70-race partnership between Jason Roy and Williamson proved crucial. SRH promoted Abhishek Sharma to the top. But after hitting a four and a six against George Garton, the youngster came out. Williamson announced his arrival at the crease with a delicious run from Mohammed Siraj followed by a pull up to the limit of the deep square leg.

Roy gradually grew in the game and SRH had very decent Powerplay – 50/1. To Kohli’s credit, his proactive captain worked to RCB’s advantage. After the first strategic timeout, when Yuzvendra Chahal knocked down a fairly ordinary blow, Kohli immediately brought Harshal Patel back. The latter kicked Williamson and claimed three wickets to bring his tournament total to 29.

For RCB, help also came from an unexpected neighborhood, as Dan Christian rolled back the years. The 38-year-old is not known for his consecutive breakthroughs. His job is to keep things tight in the middle. But Christian explained Priyam Garg with a short delivery that restricted the batsman for the spot before removing a blinker from his own bowling alley to sideline Roy similarly.

This caused the SSR to lose momentum. In one phase, they lost four wickets in five overs for just 31 races. But their bowlers stood up to be counted.