Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper, Virat Kohli © AFP
Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper, Virat Kohli © AFP

IPL 2018: Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), after a poor last season and forgettable tournament-opener in IPL 11, finally have points in their kitty courtesy a win over Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) at home. At one stage, KXIP were running away with the game thanks to KL Rahul’s 47 and their spin trio — Ravichandran Ashwin, Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Akshar Patel — but AB de Villiers responded to RCB bowlers’ hard work. Chasing 156, RCB tottered but eventually got past the finish line. A perfectionist Virat Kohli stated that his side needs to see off the powerplay overs smartly while batting, and urged for little partnerships. However, Kohli also lauded Umesh Yadav (Man of the Match for 3 for 23), Washington Sundar and Chris Woakes for their bowling.

In the post-match conference, a relieved Kohli said, “Very happy. First home game is crucial. Last year, we couldn’t get off to a start. Crowd has a lot of expectations, and tonight was a game we wanted badly, especially in the initial stages of the tournament. We knew new ball will come on nicely, and their batsmen hit some good shots.”

On the bowling performance, KXIP were all-out for 155 after being 71 for 3 in 9 overs, Kohli added, “Umesh bowled well; getting three wickets in an over is great. Our mindset is – we want our best bowlers to step up and get confident early on. When only five (bowlers) are playing, you have to hit your areas well. They have done well. I think 170 would have been par. ” Regarding M. Chinnaswamy’s pitch, he replied, “It is slightly better than the last year but against the older ball, middle overs can be difficult.”

Kohli’s word of caution

“We have lost two wickets in two balls in the last two games, so we have to work on them. Maybe stitch a little partnership. Back to back wickets pushes you back in the eight ball,” signed off RCB skipper.