New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: Mohammed Siraj breathed fire with the new ball as Royal Challengers Bangalore crushed Kolkata Knight Riders by eight wickets in game 39 of the Indian Premier League 2020 at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium on Wednesday. Opting to bat first, Kolkata got off to a disastrous start, losing its top order in the powerplay, and was restricted to just 84 for 8 — the lowest total  in the history of Indian Premier League by a side which hasn’t been bowled out in 20 overs. 

Siraj tore into Kolkata's batting line up with his two maiden overs and three important wickets in the powerplay. The Eoin Morgan-men failed the recover from the early jolts and were restricted to 84. Siraj was awarded Man of the Match for his brilliant spell of 4 for just 14.

“Was bowling with the new ball a lot in practice. Got the opportunity today,” Siraj said after the match. “The mood in the camp is great. Everyone is supporting each other, talking to each other. Cherish the delivery to Rana (as it) came out exactly as I had thought.”

Defending the total, Kolkata failed to take a wicket inside the powerplay for the fifth consecutive match, but briefly bounced back with successive wickets of openers Aaron Finch and Devdutt Padikkal in the seventh over.  Skipper Virat Kohli and Gurkeerat Singh Mann steadied the innings and breezed through the run chase with eight wickets to spare. 

“Management have brought in a proper culture. We have plan A, we have plan B, and people are executing it that’s why it’s looking good,” Kohli said after the match. “Don’t think a lot of people have belief in RCB. Guys in the change room do and that’s all that matters. Can have the best players in the world but if you don’t have the belief it is no good.”

With the win, Bangalore have moved to the top of the points table. The team has 14 points in 10 matches and will need just one more win to secure a place in the playoffs. Kolkata, on the other hand, are still placed fourth, with ten points in as many matches. The team will need to win at least two of their remaining four matches to qualify for the playoffs.

Posted By: Lakshay Raja