IPL 2020: Kohli, Morris take Bangalore to 171-6
The RCB skipper became the first cricketer to play 200 matches for a single IPL franchise
Captain Virat Kohli and all-rounder Chris Morris helped the Royal Challengers Bangalore put up a competitive score against wooden spoonists Kings XI Punjab in Sharjah on Thursday night.
Kohli marked his 200th match for the Royal Challengers Bangalore by making 48 from 39 balls with three boundaries, while Morris, who has added heft to the team since he has come on, blitzed an eight-ball 25 with three sixes and a boundary.
That took RCB from a mediocre looking score to a decent 171-6 at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.
Kohli became the first cricketer to play 200 matches for a single IPL franchise.
"RCB means a lot, not many understand that emotion," Kohli had said at the toss.
"Two hundred games for them is unbelievable, I wouldn't have believed it in 2008. It is an honour, they have kept me and I have stayed on," the 31-year-old added.
Kohli didn't blink an eye after winning the toss and decided to have first go on the Sharjah surface.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore didn't tinker with their winning combination, while Kings XI Punjab, who are still searching for one, made three changes.
'Universe Boss' Chris Gayle was passed fit after a bout of food poisoning made his bow in this edition, while Murugan Ashwin and Deepak Hooda came in. The ones to miss out were Mandeep Singh, who was out with an injury, while Prabhsimran and Mujeeb Ur Rahman too made way.
The RCB openers Aaron Finch and Devdutt Padikkal gave them a decent start by putting on 38 runs for the first wicket.
Finch was looking in good touch as he smacked two boundaries and a six in his 18-ball 20, while the left-handed Padikkal hit one four and a six for his 18 from 12 deliveries.
The young Padikkal was caught by Nicholas Pooran off Arshdeep Singh, while leg spinner Murugan Ashwin accounted for Finch and Washington Sundar to leave RCB on 100 for three in 13.3 overs. Kohli was on a 26-ball 34 with the help of three boundaries, while Shivam Dube, who along with Sundar, was surprisingly sent up the order, was on seven.
Dube brought up the tournament's 400th six with a 91-metre hit off Ravi Bishnoi and followed it up with another 76-metred one as the RCB reached 41 sixes in the tournament.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore had been lacking in a bit of direction on a sluggish surface and reached 122 for three in 15 overs. And with Dube, AB de Villiers and Kohli falling soon after, it looked like they would have to settle for a low total.
But Chris Morris' late blitz ensured that they reached a competitive score with 49 coming from the last five overs.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: 171-6 in 20 overs
(Virat Kohli 48, Chris Morris 25 not out, Shivam Dube 23, Aaron Finch 20, M Ashwin 2-23, Mohammed Shami 2-45) vs Kings XI Punjab.
Royal Challengers Bangalore:
Devdutt Padikkal, Aaron Finch, Virat Kohli (C), AB de Villiers (wk), Washington Sundar, Shivam Dube, Chris Morris, Isuru Udana, Navdeep Saini, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal.
Kings XI Punjab:
Chris Gayle, KL Rahul (C) (wk), Mayank Agarwal, Nicholas Pooran, Glenn Maxwell, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan, Murugan Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh.