Royal Challengers Bangalore’s fortunes have been in complete contrast. Although they finished runners-up in 2011 and 2016, RCB have struggled badly over the last three seasons, ending eighth, sixth and eighth respectively. They will have to show significant improvement to make an impression this season. Their poor show has basically been down to poor team selection, and over-dependence on a few star players.
SRH have a good mix of superstars and youngsters, which has served them well in the past. Skipper David Warner and Jonny Bairstow formed an awesome opening combination last year, featuring in a record three consecutive hundred-run partnerships. They will be keen to carry on from where they left off last year. Manish Pandey is another key component in the batting line-up, as he has the ability to play game-changing knocks. In the bowling department, SRH have been well served by the experienced Bhuvneshwar Kumar as well as the Afghan duo of Mohammad Nabi and Rashid Khan.
If we look at RCB’s make-up, they have constantly looked up to skipper Virat Kohli and the legendary AB de Villiers to deliver. The duo has rarely failed to come up with the goods but the others have struggled, and that is one of the chief reasons why RCB haven’t done too much of note in the recent past. This year, they have tried to strengthen both their batting and bowling department by bringing in the Aussie duo of opener Aaron Finch and leg-spinner Adam Zampa. It remains to be seen what kind of impact they can have on the team’s fortunes.
Head to Head Record: The teams have met on 15 occasions, with SRH winning eight and RCB six. One game ended in No Result.
SRH Probable XI: David Warner (c), Jonny Bairstow (wk), Manish Pandey, Priyam Garg, Vijay Shankar, Abdul Samad/Abhishek Sharma, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Khaleel Ahmed/Siddarth Kaul, Shahbaz Nadeem
RCB Probable XI: Aaron Finch, Devdutt Padikkal, Virat Kohli (c), AB de Villiers (wk), Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Chris Morris, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Adam Zampa, Navdeep Saini, Dale Steyn/Isuru Udana
The pitch in Dubai is considered reasonably good for batting. Spinners should come into play in the second half of the batting innings. Dew is likely to play a role, and teams might prefer fielding first.
The weather forecast for Monday in Dubai says it will be hot and sunny. Temperature will be around 37 degree Celsius, and humidity around 51 per cent.