Pune outshine Bangalore with help of great bowling

It looks like there is still some time before we begin to see the true batting prowess from Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Meanwhile, last year's runners-up RCB have also been struggling, having lost four matches and won only one - against Delhi Daredevils.

Tiwary said he was not surprised with his side's 161/8 after being sent into bat because he knew the wicket was very hard to play on.

RCB bowlers operated with discipline, giving no room for the batsmen.

If RCB were desperate, RPS weren't any different with three back to back losses clogging their minds.

The fall of six wickets inside the final five overs would have given RCB cause for optimism, but their response with the bat soon wobbled. Surprising really for a T20 game.

Recollecting Dhoni's century against England in the ODI series previous year, Sehwag said a player of his stature should not be judged on the basis of IPL. "But I thought Tiwary finished off well for us and I thought 160 was par on that wicket".

The first 10 overs produced 66 runs for RCB with 95 required off the last 10 overs.

The Tiwary show: Despite the low score, things could've been a lot tighter had it not been for Manoj Tiwary and his late-innings blast. The amount of runs we put up helped the bowlers do their job.

Tripathi fell shortly after for 31 before captain Steve Smith and Mahendra Singh Dhoni steadied the ship with a 58-run stand.

On an uneven, two-paced pitch at M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Pune had slumped from 127 for 2 to 130 for 7. And it certainly looked that way when Supergiant's openers Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Tripathi started off in a very attacking manner. Rahane, in particular, was more spectacular in his shots and the two batsmen were severe on Adam Milne, who was playing his first match of the tournament.

Dhoni and Smith joined forces at 69 for two. "Before I came here, I had a plan to build my innings if the situation demanded and be aggressive at the same time", he said.

But just like Pune's middle-order collapse, RCB's batsmen also found that the ball wasn't coming onto the bat as they had expected. Teams (from):Gujarat Lions:Suresh Raina (Capt), Akshadeep Nath, Shubham Agarwal, Basil Thampi, Dwayne Bravo, Chirag Suri, James Faulkner, Aaron Finch, Manpreet Gony, Ishan Kishan, Ravindra Jadeja, Shadab Jakati, Dinesh Kartik, Dhavak Kulkarni, Shivil Kaushik, Praveen Kumar, Brandon McCullum, Munaf Patel, Pratham Singh, Jason Roy, Pradeep Sangwan, Jaydev Shah, Shelly Shaurya, Nathusingh, Dwayne Smith, Tejas Baroka and Andrew Tye. They were looking for some quality batting. The move did not work out as Watson conceded 44 runs in his four overs and was bowled by Ben Stokes for 14.

  • Julie Sanders