The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and the Rajasthan Royals (RR) are in similar positions in the 2022 Indian Premier League (IPL) points table, but they’ve taken highly contrasting paths to get here. When they face off in Match 39 of IPL 2022 at the MCA Stadium in Pune on Tuesday, April 27, the two ideologies will clash in what is bound to be an excellent contest.
RR have been carried by the weight of top-order runs, with Jos Buttler head and shoulders above everyone else on the IPL 2022 Orange Cap list. He has been supported by Devdutt Padikkal and Sanju Samson, who – despite having not hit top form – have played able hands. Shimron Hetmyer has finished innings off with panache, making sure that the Royals’ thin batting lineup hasn’t been exposed often.
Speaking of finishers, Dinesh Karthik has been the standout batter for RCB. Faf du Plessis has played the odd sizeable knock, but Anuj Rawat and Virat Kohli have been colossal disappointments on either side of him. Kohli, in particular, can’t seem to buy a run at the moment, with two golden ducks on the trot. Bangalore’s trusted batters need to come good soon because the middle order can’t paper over the cracks each time.
IPL 2022 Match Prediction: RCB vs RR
Unfortunately for RCB, things won’t get easy against a potent RR bowling attack. While Trent Boult is one of the best powerplay enforcers in the world, Prasidh Krishna overturned a lean run of form with a magnificent three-wicket haul – including a wicket-maiden in the penultimate over – in the previous game. Yuzvendra Chahal and Ravichandran Ashwin offer eight overs of world-class spin, which is something only Glenn Maxwell and Shahbaz Ahmed are potent at countering among the RCB middle order.
Unless Bangalore’s top order fires, they’ll stand no chance against the Royals, who have managed to notch up five wins despite being on the wrong end of the toss most of the time. Yes, they’ve been carried by Buttler, but do RCB have a strike bowler who can dismiss the Englishman early? If Josh Hazlewood can make a few early inroads, the RR batting lineup could be dismantled, especially considering Wanindu Hasaranga’s positive matchup against Samson.
RCB are on the back of a horror performance against the Sunrisers Hyderabad, where some swing up front completely derailed their batting. Whether that toss takes a toll on their momentum remains to be seen. This one’s too close to call, but unless Bangalore can see the back of Buttler early, their fragile batting might not be able to face the music.
Prediction: RR to win Match 39 of IPL 2022