Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), the perennial underachievers of the Indian Premier League (IPL), were just a match away from winning their maiden title but succumbed against the brilliance of David Warner in the title-decider last year.
The Virat Kohli-led side managed just a couple of wins from their first seven matches. Their batsmen were firing on all cylinders but the bowlers consistently failed to defend big totals. Absence of Samuel Badree and Mitchell Starc made it tough for Kohli to churn out wins on a regular basis.
The signing of Chris Jordan in addition to Yuzvendra Chahal and Sreenath Aravind’s brilliant performance helped them do well in the second-half of the tournament. Moreover, their batsmen were in such a devastating form that the bowlers had little to worry. Having been on the brink of being knocked out at one point, they sealed a play-off berth by winning six of their last seven games. But their bowling (once again) failed in the final as they conceded 208 runs in the final and went on to lose the match by seven runs.
Just before the start of this year’s player auction, RCB suffered another setback when their pace spearhead Starc pulled out of the tournament. Bowling has always been their nemesis and as expected, they went all out to secure some quality bowlers in last month’s auction. They bought as many as five players with all of them being bowlers. The team management strengthened the bowling unit by securing the services of English T20 specialist Tymal Mills, Aussie speedster Billy Stanlake, Pawan Negi and two young local talents.
The three-time runners-up will begin their campaign this season against the defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad on April 5 in Hyderabad, while their last match is against Delhi Daredevils on May 13 in New Delhi.
Here is RCB’s full IPL 2017 schedule:
|April 5, 2017||Sunrisers Hyderabad v Royal Challengers Bangalore||Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium, Hyderabad||20:00|
|April 8, 2017||Royal Challengers Bangalore v Delhi Daredevils||M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru||20:00|
|April 10, 2017||Kings XI Punjab v Royal Challengers Bangalore||Holkar Cricket Stadium, Indore||20:00|
|April 14, 2017||Royal Challengers Bangalore v Mumbai Indians||M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru||16:00|
|April 16, 2017||Royal Challengers Bangalore v Rising Pune Supergiant||M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru||20:00|
|April 18, 2017||Gujarat Lions v Royal Challengers Bangalore||Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Rajkot||20:00|
|April 23, 2017||Kolkata Knight Riders v Royal Challengers Bangalore||Eden Gardens, Kolkata||20:00|
|April 25, 2017||Royal Challengers Bangalore v Sunrisers Hyderabad||M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru||20:00|
|April 27, 2017||Royal Challengers Bangalore v Gujarat Lions||M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru||20:00|
|April 29, 2017||Rising Pune Supergiant v Royal Challengers Bangalore||Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune||16:00|
|May 1, 2017||Mumbai Indians v Royal Challengers Bangalore||Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai||16:00|
|May 5, 2017||Royal Challengers Bangalore v Kings XI Punjab||M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru||20:00|
|May 7, 2017||Royal Challengers Bangalore v Kolkata Knight Riders||M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru||16:00|
|May 14, 2017||Delhi Daredevils v Royal Challengers Bangalore||Feroz Shah Kotla Ground, Delhi||20:00|