BENGALURU: There were a lot of similarities between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Punjab Kings, ahead of their first game of IPL 2022 in Mumbai on Sunday. Despite possessing a star-studded line-up in the past, both teams have underachieved, failing to win the title.
The 15th edition is a fresh guard for both with two new captains. If Faf Du Plessis has been handed the responsibility for Bangalore, Mayank Agarwal was the chosen one for Punjab.
If their first game is any indication, Du Plessis has taken the new responsibility like duck to water, top-scoring with 88 runs to help his team score 205/2, a challenging score on any surface. One also needs to applaud Virat Kohli, who helped Du Plessis get into the groove with the former scoring runs quite briskly.
But then, there was no way Punjab could be taken easily, especially with established T20 players in their side. Punjab did manage to score at a good rate in the powerplay, with Agarwal leading from the front, scoring a 24-ball 32.
That set the tone for the other batters as they reached their 100 in the 11th over with Shikhar Dhawan bringing in all his experience into play while Bhanuka Rajapaksa brought his A-game. Odean Smith and Shahrukh Khan put up an unbeaten 52-run partnership in 25 balls to seal the match.
Brief scores: RCB 205/2 in 20 overs (Du Plessis 88) lost to PBKS 208/5 in 19 overs (Rajapaksa 43, Dhawan 43, Agarwal 32, Odean 25 n.o)