Royal Challengers Bangalore has always been top heavy as a team. But in addition to retaining their main batsmen this season, they finally have a bowling attack to lend the team the balance it has always craved.
While it was clear from the off that RCB meant business when they retained Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and Sarfaraz Khan ahead of the auction, it was surprising for some to not see them bidding for Chris Gayle during the auction. However, Brendon McCullum, Parthiv Patel and Quinton de Kock soon followed and the team already started to look like they had the core of their batting lineup in shape.
The big difference this year is that RCB has a batting line-up that runs deep, with them snapping up all-rounders like Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Washington Sundar and Pawan Negi. On their day, the first two in that list can be particularly devastating.
As far as RCB’s bowling line-up is concerned, the influence of Ashish Nehra (who is in the coaching staff) is there to see. A wily T20 bowler himself in the latter stages of his career, RCB has picked bowlers in the same mould. Tim Southee and Nathan Coulter-Nile will battle it out for a starting spot in all probability, in addition to the pace of promising Indian bowler Mohammed Siraj and Umesh Yadav. Yuzvendra Chahal will provide the required guile as a spinner.
The RCB squad certainly looks capable of winning the Indian Premier League this season. But having reached the final twice and not winning the tournament even once, it will be something that will certainly be brought up even if RCB are dominant. On paper, it looks like their best chance of winning the Indian Premier League yet.
Here’s how RCB could possibly line-up in the upcoming season.
- Brendon McCullum
- Parthiv Patel
- Virat Kohli ©
- AB de Villiers
- Manan Vohra
- Sarfaraz Khan
- Moeen Ali
- Washington Sundar
- Yuzvendra Chahal
- Tim Southee
- Umesh Yadav