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Author Topic: Ipl 3 Today, RR vs. RCB, Match 49, Warne & Kumble in the same boat  (Read 1242 times)

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Ipl 3 Today, Rajasthan Royals vs. Royal Challengers Bangalore
Match 49 - 08:00 PM IST
Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur

Below the palatial arches of the member's pavilion, the guards sneaked glimpses of a game on television that blared visuals of a relieved looking Shane Warne, after having led Rajasthan Royals to its first victory in IPL III over the Kolkata Knight Riders.

The re-run concluded with a still of the group tables, which showed Rajasthan occupying the bottom spot, while Royal Challengers Bangalore was perched at the top.

Clutching onto empty ceramic cups with the emblem of the home franchise printed on it, the guards at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium spoke animatedly about Rajasthan's terrible start to the tournament.

Three and a half weeks after the footage entered the archives, Rajasthan and Bangalore are tied on points (12) after having played a dozen games each, and are all set to take on each other in a virtual knock-out clash on Wednesday.

After the fourth round of games in IPL III, Rajasthan had salvaged some pride with a solitary victory over Kolkata, after kicking off the tournament with a hat-trick of losses.

At the same time, Bangalore could do no wrong. Firing on all cylinders, Anil Kumble's rampaging side led the group table after having completed a hat-trick of victories, well and truly on their way after the initial stutter in the opening game.

Rajasthan and Bangalore's campaigns couldn't have begun more differently, but as this edition draws to its conclusion, their dilemma couldn't be any more similar. Having taken opposite paths in their quest for a semi-final spot, Warne and Kumble's sides cannot afford to lose.

While Bangalore would have earned some breathing space if they had chased down Deccan Chargers's target of 152 on Monday night, they folded up for 138 after an excruciatingly slow start.

Although Jacques Kallis temporarily earned his Orange Cap back during his 37-ball 27 knock, Kumble believed the tempo of his innings to be the downfall of the run-chase.

The bowling though, has done well as the team has managed to restrict rivals to achievable scores mainly due to Kumble and Dale Steyn. They have scalped 22 wickets between them (11 a piece), while boasting of stunning economy rates of less than seven runs/over.

But their star-studded batting line-up - which includes the likes of Kallis, Kevin Pietersen, Ross Taylor, Robin Uthappa and Virat Kohli to name a few - has been a problem. With the exception of Kallis (528) and Uthappa (318), none of the big names have scored more than 300 runs in the tournament.

The similarities between the two sides ends with the fact that they are led by two great leg-spinners, the differences are plenty. But come Friday, only one team will stand a chance of making it to the semis. The other though, will always have the archives show on the television.
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