Both Punjab Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore will be looking to get off the IPL 2022 on a winning note as they begin the quest for their maiden silverware.
Punjab, who played the final of 2014, have not made it to the playoffs in the last seven seasons and will be hoping to end the streak this year with a completely revamped squad. They purchased 23 players in the auction, the costliest of which was Liam Livingstone for Rs 11.5 crore.
RCB, on the other hand, will be led by new skipper Faf du Plessis. After losing three finals since the tournament’s inception, the Bangalore franchise will look to break the final barrier this time around.
PBKS vs RCB – Head to head total
PBKS and RCB have met 28 times in the IPL. Punjab have won 15 of those games while RCB have 13 wins. In the last five matches between the two teams, Punjab have won three.
The highest score posted by PBKS against RCB is 232, while the highest score posted by RCB against PBKS is 226. The lowest total posted by both teams against each other is 88 (PBKS) and 84 (RCB).
Injury update and team news
PBKS – Jonny Bairstow will not be available for the first few games because he is currently playing for England against the West Indies. He is expected to arrive in India next week.
RCB – For RCB, Glenn Maxwell, Josh Hazlewood and Jason Behrendorff are not available for the first few games.
Probable XI for both the teams
Punjab Kings: Shikhar Dhawan, Mayank Agarwal (c), Liam Livingstone, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Shahrukh Khan, Jitesh Sharma (wk), Odean Smith, Harpreet Brar, Sandeep Sharma, Rahul Chahar, Arshdeep Singh
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Faf du Plessis (c), Anuj Rawat, Virat Kohli, Mahipal Lomror, Sherfane Rutherford, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Wanindu Hasaranga, David Willey, Harshal Patel, Shahbaz Ahmed, Mohammed Siraj
Two players to watch out for from both teams
PBKS – Shikhar Dhawan and Mayank Agarwal
Both the Punjab openers are likely to be the best performers for their team in the opening game. Shikhar Dhawan is overall the second-highest run-scorer in IPL history and he has been among the top five run-scorers in each of the last three years. Mayank Agarwal will play the second fiddle to Dhawan at the top of the order. He has been one of the most consistent performers for Punjab over the last few years and will be looking to maintain the good form alongside the new responsibility of captaining the team.
RCB – Faf du Plessis and Harshal Patel
Faf du Plessis, one of CSK’s most flamboyant batsmen, will be embarking on a new journey with RCB in IPL 2022, both as a batsman and captain. The opener is a destructive white-ball player who can take on the best of bowlers effortlessly. Fast bowler Patel, on the other hand, was the highest wicket-taker of IPL 2021 and will be raring to put up similar performances this year.
Who will win the match between PBKS and RCB?
According to Betwala, RCB will be the favourites going into this game. Punjab’s new captain Mayank Agarwal does not have enough captaincy experience and it may take him a couple of games to get all his moves right. Despite Glenn Maxwell and Josh Hazlewood not being a part of this game, RCB boast of a stronger and more experienced squad as compared to PBKS. No doubt that the PBKS boast of Dhawan in their ranks, but he is the only experienced name that they have. RCB, on the other hand, have quite a few experienced international players in Faf du Plessis, Virat Kohli, Sherfane Rutherford, Dinesh Karthik, Wanindu Hasaranga and Mohammed Siraj.
Where to watch the PBKS vs RCB IPL 2022 match in India?
The PBKS vs RCB IPL 2022 match can be watched on the Star Sports Network in India at 7.30 PM IST on March 27. You can also watch the match online on the Hotstar app.
Image credit: BCCI/IPL