Aakash Chopra reckons Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB)’s poor record at home could prove to be one of their stumbling blocks in IPL 2023.
RCB face Mumbai Indians (MI) at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore in the evening game on Sunday (April 2). Faf du Plessis and Co. beat the five-time champions by seven wickets in the only clash between the two sides last year and will hope to replicate that performance in their first meeting in 2023.
While previewing the game in a video shared on his YouTube channel, Chopra opined that RCB‘s inferior record at home could prove to be their Achilles heel, saying:
“It will be the Chinnaswamy ground. This team’s record at home is very, very pedestrian. It is second from bottom. Delhi have the worst record and Bangalore are also close by.”
The former Kolkata Knight Riders player pointed out that the three-time finalists have a plethora of injury and form-related issues, explaining:
“Josh Hazlewood is unavailable as of now. Glenn Maxwell’s form is unavailable and Wanindu Hasaranga is not there. They invested a lot in him. Wanindu has been absolutely outstanding, but he is unavailable for this match. Rajat Patidar is also not there. So there are a lot of problems.”
Chopra feels Wanindu Hasaranga‘s absence will considerably weaken RCB’s spin bowling. He named Reece Topley, David Willey, Glenn Maxwell and Faf du Plessis as the likely four overseas players in the RCB playing XI.
“It is a slightly tricky situation for Mumbai this time” – Aakash Chopra on Mumbai Indians batting order
Speaking about Mumbai Indians, Aakash Chopra feels their batting order could be a subject of debate:
“The batting order will be a focus of discussion. Rohit Sharma, Ishan Kishan and then Suryakumar Yadav or Tilak Varma. After that, Cameron Green in the middle and Tim David later. It is a slightly tricky situation for Mumbai this time.”
While opining that Cameron Green could be best utilised in the top three, the cricketer-turned-commentator pointed out that such a move would mean some other batters playing out of position:
“I believe if you have to get the best from Cameron Green, make him bat at No. 3 or get him to open. But if you do that, someone has to come down. You actually want to bat Surya at No. 3, Rohit and Ishan will open and Tilak Varma can be best used up the order. So who will go down the order?”
Chopra highlighted that Mumbai Indians’ bowling is slightly weak. However, he still picked Rohit Sharma’s team to win the Sunday evening game.
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