Since 2008, the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) have always brought forth formidable lineups in their squad, consisting of quality domestic and international cricketers.
But, more often than not, RCB is one of the first few teams which are out of the competition, even before the business end of the tournament.
In the last auctions, RCB think-tank made a conscious effort to cover-up for the shortcomings in their lineup.
Yet again, RCB has come up with a strong roster which can challenge any side in the competition.
Captain Virat Kohli will look at IPL 2020 as his moment of redemption, by clinching their maiden IPL title this season.
Today, let’s have a look at the ideal playing XI for RCB in IPL 2020:
Openers: Virat Kohli and Devdutt Padikkal
The golden rule of white-ball cricket is letting the best batsmen face the most number of deliveries.
RCB boasts arguably the best white-ball cricketer of this generation, namely Virat Kohli. The captain should set the tone up-front and therefore look at opening the batting.
His ideal partner should be Karnataka’s prodigy Devdutt Padikkal, who has already grown in stature in first-class cricket.
RCB has the option of looking at the experience of Parthiv Patel, who also donned the gloves in the past
Looking at Kohli’s affinity towards flair players, Padikkal is likely to be given the nod ahead of Patel.
Middle Order: AB de Villiers, Moeen Ali
RCB has done brilliantly to remove the fragility in the middle-order with the purchase of Moeen Ali. Together with legend AB de Villiers, Ali makes RCB’s middle-order stable.
In the recent practice-sessions of RCB, fans have seen AB donning the gloves. Therefore, in all likelihood, the South African will take up wicket-taking duties to add balance to the playing XI.
All-rounders: Chris Morris, Shivam Dubey, Pawan Negi
The RCB franchise went all-out for the purchase of all-rounder Chris Morris during the last auctions. He was bought at an exorbitant price of INR 10 crores.
Morris will be a constant pick within the four overseas players in the XI, throughout the tournament.
The Kohli-led side will bank on their balance, with Shivam Dubey and Pawan Negi forming the lower-order.
Morris will solve the death bowling woes for RCB, while Dubey can fill the void of bowlers having a bad day at the office.
Negi’s left-arm spin is bound to cause trouble to the batters on sluggish wickets of Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
Spinners: Adam Zampa, Yuzvendra Chahal
The wrist-spinning option of Adam Zampa and Yuzvendra Chahal is one of the most potent spin attacks in the tournament.
Zampa, who comes in place of Kane Richardson as a replacement, has shown rich wicket-taking form in the recent white-ball series against England.
Since his joining in the RCB camp, Chahal has been the go-to bowler for Kohli in the middle-overs. Zampa and Chahal bowling in tandem are bound to create havoc in the opposition’s camp.
Pacers: Navdeep Saini, Umesh Yadav
Speaking of widespread destruction with raw pace, there’s none better than India internationals Umesh Yadav and Navdeep Saini.
The two have been at the fringes of the Indian team for a long time now. The duo would be looking to make a statement for selectors in the upcoming edition of the tournament.
RCB has the option of experimenting with Dale Steyn, by swapping with Zampa, according to the demands of the conditions.
Also, with Isuru Udana in the ranks, RCB has rich depth in the death bowling department.
The Challengers have a rich reservoir of potential to choose from. Kohli will be assisted by Australian captain Aaron Finch in making important decisions in regards to captaincy.
Finch is one also one of the most destructive batsmen in the world on his day. Another exciting prospect for RCB is Big Bash League (BBL) sensation, Josh Phillippe.
Mohammad Siraj will be introduced in the lineup at one point in time as a backup for Saini and Yadav. It should be a face-off between Washington Sundar and Negi for the slot of the spinning all-rounder.
RCB Ideal Playing XI:
- Virat Kohli – Matches: 177 Runs: 5412 HS: 113 Avg: 37.84 SR: 131.61 100’s: 5 50’s: 36
- Devdutt Padikkal (T20s) – Matches: 12 Runs: 580 HS: 122* Avg: 64.44 SR: 175.75 100’s: 1 50’s: 5
- AB de Villiers – Matches: 154 Runs: 4395 HS: 133* Avg: 39.95 SR: 151.23 100’s: 3 50’s: 33
- Moeen Ali – Matches: 16 Runs: 297 HS: 66 SR: 165.92 50’s: 3 Wkts: 9 Econ: 6.96
- Chris Morris – Matches: 61 Runs: 517 HS: 82* SR: 157.62 50’s: 2 Wkts: 69 BF: 4/23 Econ: 7.98
- Shivam Dube – Matches: 4 Runs: 40 SR: 121.21 Econ: 4.80
- Pawan Negi – Matches: 50 Runs: 365 HS: 36 SR: 126.29 Wkts: 34 BF: 4/18 Econ: 7.86 4w: 1
- Adam Zampa – Matches: 11 Runs: 19 BF: 6/19 Econ: 7.55 4w: 1
- Yuzvendra Chahal – Matches: 84 Wkts: 100 BF: 4/25 Bowl Avg: 23.18 Econ: 7.78 Bowl SR: 17.87 4w: 2
- Navdeep Saini – Matches: 13 Wkt: 11 BF: 2/24 Bowl Avg:36.09 Econ: 8.27 Bowl SR: 26.18
- Umesh Yadav – Matches: 119 BF: 4/24 Econ 8.45 Bowl SR: 20.84 4w: 2