Royal Challengers Bangalore. (Photo Source: Twitter/WPL)
After losing five matches in a row, Royal Challengers Bangalore finally won their first game of the WPL season, beating UP Warriorz by five wickets. The Smriti Mandhana-led side was brilliant right from the start, bundling Warriorz for only 135 runs. While chasing, they lost three quick wickets but youngsters Kanika Ahuja (46 off 30 deliveries) and Richa Ghosh (31* off 32) stepped up and played some brilliant cricket to bring RCB back on track.
Coming to bowlers, Sophie Devine was sensational with the new ball. The New Zealand international dismissed Alyssa Healy and Devika Vaidya in the first over of the match itself and that gave the team a lot of confidence. Notably, after the match, former India batter Aakash Chopra stated that it was an important toss for RCB to win and they also needed ‘Devine’ intervention in the early part of the match and that is exactly what they got.
“They won an important toss because there was help from the pitch. There was a lot of fresh grass. Interestingly enough Sophie Devine, who hadn’t been given much bowling until now – they needed Devine intervention, picked up two wickets in the first over. Devika Vaidya and Alyssa Healy were dismissed,” Chopra was quoted as saying by Sportskeeda.
“After that, another wicket from the other end. Wickets were tumbling one after the other. Tahlia McGrath was dismissed off Megan Schutt’s bowling. Ellyse Perry also came in the end and picked up three wickets. Another brilliant thing was Asha Shobana. She bowls leg spin and should have got four wickets,” he added.
RCB’s story is that if a task can be done with difficulty, why should it be done with ease: Aakash Chopra
Meanwhile talking about the run-chase, the 45-year-old pointed out that Smriti Mandhana and company should have won the game with absolute ease but they however complicated it in the middle. He also lauded Kanika Ahuja and Richa Ghosh for their brilliant partnership in the middle overs.
“RCB‘s story is that if a task can be done with difficulty, why should it be done with ease? Wickets fell one after the other. UP Warriorz came with the spin-to-win mantra. Sophie Devine hits two fours and a six in the first over and then out. In the next over, Deepti bowled a delivery and Smriti Mandhana was once again dismissed by an off-spinner – she got out for zero. Then two more wickets fell – Heather got out and later Ellyse Perry and it seemed they are gone but that didn’t happen,” the former cricketer added.
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