Following his side’s six-wicket loss to Rajasthan Royals in their Indian Premier League (IPL), Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) skipper Faf Du Plessis said that the wicket was tricky in the first innings and got better to bat on later because of dew. Virat Kohli’s blitzkrieg century went in vain as Jos Buttler’s thunderous hundred lit up the Sawai Mansingh Stadium to power Rajasthan Royals (RR) to a six-wicket victory over Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) on Saturday.

Speaking after the match in the post-match presentation, Plessis said, “I think we found the wicket tricky in the first innings. I thought 190 was a good score, think we could have added 10-15 runs max. Their spinners bowled well (in the middle overs), good decision for them to bowl first. With the dew, batting got easier. Virat was playing well at the back end, with someone like Cameron Green coming in, you want to maximise those last overs. We tried to squeeze as hard as we could, but it was tricky to hit against the spinners. It was easier to hit the seamers. The pitch got better, you could feel it, and the ball was skidding along nicely. We were excellent in the first four overs.”

The skipper admitted that spinner Mayank Dagar’s over, the sixth during RR’s run-chase, which gave away 22 runs, shifted the momentum to RR after an early wicket. He also explained the reasoning behind not giving the ball to Maxwell, who has been the highest wicket-taking bowler for RCB in this tournament, with four scalps.

“I think that 20 runs over (from Dagar) took the momentum away and shifted the pressure back on us. Not bowling Maxwell was because all right-handers were batting, so went to the left-handed spinner initially. With two right-handers at the crease, went to the left-arm spinner and later got the leg spinner (Himanshu Sharma) into the attack. There was no point in being defensive, we needed wickets,” said Plessis.

“When we got Jaiswal out, I did not feel the need to go to Maxwell. Fielding was average, it’s something we have spoken about, and we will work and try to improve. Not worried about catches, it’s about showing intensity on the field,” he concluded.

Coming to the match, RR put RCB to field first. Despite an opening partnership of 125 runs between skipper Faf Du Plessis (44 in 33 balls, with two fours and two sixes) and Virat Kohli (113* in 72 balls, with 12 fours and four sixes), RCB failed to put up a fine total on the board, settling for 183/3 in their 20 overs.

Yuzvendra Chahal (2/34) was the pick of the bowlers for RR. Nandre Burger also took a wicket.

In the run-chase, RR did lose Yashasvi Jaiswal for a duck. But skipper Sanju Samson (69 in 42 balls, with eight fours and two sixes) joined forces with Jos Buttler (100* in 58 balls, with nine fours and four sixes), who roared back into form with a century in his 100th IPL match. Despite some quick wickets later, RR chased down the total with five balls and six wickets in hand.

Reece Topley (2/27) was the pick of the bowlers for RCB. Yash Dayal and Mohammed Siraj took a wicket each but it was not enough.

Buttler took home the ‘Player of the Match’ award.

RR is at the top spot, having won four of their four games, which gives them eight points. RCB is at eighth spot with a win in their five matches, giving them only two points.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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