Dubai: The celebrated pair of Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers were briefly entertaining, but Chennai Super Kings managed to restrict Royal Challengers Bangalore to 145 for 6 in an Indian Premier League game here on Sunday.
Sam Curran was once again brilliant up-front and also at the death, finishing with figures of 3/19 in three overs.
Credit to the CSK bowlers as they conceded only 20 runs in the last three overs and managed to take four wickets.
IPL’s most prolific batting pair of Kohli and De Villiers added 82 runs with some great technique against CSK spinners Imran Tahir (1/30 in 4 overs) and Mitchell Santner (1/23 in 4 overs) who kept a tight leash during the middle overs.
Deepak Chahar was once again steady, finishing with 2 for 31 in his four-over spell.
Kohli scored 50 off 43 balls with a four and a six while De Villiers helped himself to a polished 39 off 36 balls. De Villiers hit four boundaries.
The CSK bowlers did well enough to take the pace off the ball, which made it difficult for RCB batsmen to score. Yet, Kohli and De Villiers did manage to take control of the proceedings but failed to finish with a flourish.
While Devdutt Padikkal (22 off 21 balls) and Aaron Finch (15) couldn’t convert their starts, Kohli and De Villiers got together at 46 and first consolidated with their “tap and run” strategy.
However, whenever Tahir flighted the ball, his country-mate De Villiers was quick to reach to the pitch of the deliveries to drive elegantly through the covers.
Kohli had one bowler’s rear-drive off Tahir and on an excellent measure lifted Ravindra Jadeja for a straight maximum which was his 200th six.
Kohli’s off-side play was another lesson for all youngsters as he would adjust his wrists at the last moment to hit those inside-out shots off the spinners.
With ball stopping and coming off the surface, Kohli never looked out of control during his third half-century of the season.
It took a tremendous diving catch at long-ff from Faf du Plessis off Sam Curran to dismiss Kohli as RCB fell short of 150-run mark.