Bengaluru: South Africans AB de Villiers and Quinton de Kock’s struck breezy half centuries to power Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) to a mammoth 205/8 against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match at the M.Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Wednesday.
De Kock (53, 37 balls; 4×1, 6×4) played the perfect supporting role in the 103-run second wicket stand with de Villiers (68 off 30; 4×2, 6×8), who started from the word go to bring up his half century in just 23 deliveries.
Put in to bat, RCB got off to a decent 35-run start by skipper Virat Kohli (18) and de Kock before Shardul Thakur saw the back of the Indian captain, thanks to a smart catch by Ravindra Jadeja.
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But the visitors wouldn’t have imagined what was coming their way, as de Villiers started off by clobbering Harbhajan Singh for two consecutive sixes before launching left-arm spinner Jadeja to the skies.
Such was the dominance from the former Proteas skipper that the hosts raced to 87/1 midway into the innings, with both de Villiers and de Kock nearing their respective fifties.
Despite being overshadowed by his senior partner, the southpaw brought up his half century in style, tonking Shane Watson for a six over deep mid-wicket.
On the first ball of the very next over, de Villiers, who had earlier clobbered leg-spinner Imran Tahir for two massive sixes, took Thakur to the cleaners thrice consecutively to bring up his half century.
With both the RCB batsmen going hammer and tongs, CSK skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni threw the ball to his West Indian all-rounder Dwayne Bravo, and the “Champion” responded in style by packing back de Kock with a smart catch off his own follow through.
Tahir then joined the party by bagging the prized scalp of de Villiers and new man Corey Anderson (2) in the very next over to restore parity into the match.
De Villiers miscued Tahir’s tossed-up delivery pitched outside off-stump for Sam Billings to complete the formalities at deep cover.
Tahir immediately got rid of New Zealand’s Anderson with a googly as Harbhajan Singh completed a brilliant catch at slip.
With the hosts comfortably placed at 142/4, Mandeep Singh (32 off 17; 4×1, 6×3) and Colin de Grandhomme (11) struck a few lusty blows towards the end, even as two run-outs and a wicket in the final over could not stop RCB from crossing the 200-run mark.
Brief Scores: Royal Challengers Bangalore 205/8 (AB de Villiers 68, Quinton de Kock 53; Mandeep Singh 32; Imran Tahir 2/35) vs Chennai Super Kings.