Pune face uphill task against Bangalore


first_imgHaving lost four games on the trot in the fourth edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), Pune Warriors will have to pull up their socks and perform when they take on a confident Royal Challengers Bangalore at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore on Friday.The eight-wicket defeat to Chennai Super Kings in Navi Mumbai in their previous game has put the Warriors in a tricky position. With just two wins from six matches, the Yuvraj Singh-led Warriors are languishing at the ninth position with only four points and they can’t afford to lose any more matches.On paper, they have a well-rounded team with a sprinkling of stars, but performance is something they have been sorely lacking. Except for Yuvraj Singh and Robin Uthappa, the rest of the batsmen haven’t really got going. The top order has been an absolute failure with Mohnish Mishra, Jesse Ryder and Manish Pandey doing precious little in the last two games against the Super Kings.Their bowling has come good in the last three games. They made Mumbai Indians huff and puff to a last- ball win while defending 122.Unfancied names like Alfonso Thomas, Jerome Taylor, Murali Kartik and Rahul Sharma did well to keep the Super Kings on tight leash too, but their effort needs to be complemented by their batsmen.On the other hand, Royal Challengers, who struggled at the start of the championship, have gained confidence from their victories over Kolkata Knight Riders and Delhi Daredevils.With the likes of Chris Gayle, Tillakaratne Dilshan, AB de Villiers, Virat Kohli and Saurabh Tiwary in their ranks, Bangalore have a power-packed batting line up, which can ring alarm bells in any opposition camp.advertisementBut with pace spearhead Zaheer Khan looking out of sorts for most part, the team’s bowling continues to remain the weakest link. Captain Daniel Vettori has been a stand-out performer while domestic recruits Syed Mohammad and Sreenath Aravind have done reasonably well. Yet, they lack a genuine wicket-taking bowler.With seven points from seven games, Vettori’s boys would be looking to score their third successive win.- With PTI inputslast_img

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