Bengaluru: After a poor outing in the previous edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) will be aiming to lay their hands on the silverware as they have included some quality players for the upcoming edition.
After retaining skipper Virat Kohli, swashbuckling batsman AB de Villiers and promising player Sarfaraz Khan, RCB did really well in the IPL auctions, buying players according to the team management’s demands.
Unlike the last season, the major advantage for the side is that they have both Kohli as well as de Villiers available for the initial matches of the league stage. The duo missed the early matches of the IPL 2017 due to injuries, which cost RCB dearly in the end.
The franchise bought as many as 21 players in the auction, among them Chris Woakes (Rs 7.4 crore), the most expensive purchase of the franchise. The others included New Zealand batsman Brendon McCullum and South Africa’s Quinton De Kock, as also Parthiv Patel, Mandeep Singh and Manan Vohra.
The southern franchise also has a good mix of the Indian players which could prove a game changer towards the end of the cash-rich league.
Apart from Parthiv, Mandeep, Vohra, the Bengaluru team have Washington Sunder, who proved his mettle in the recently concluded Nidahas Trophy in Sri Lanka, pacer Mohammed Siraj and Umesh Yadav, leg-spinner Yuzvendra Singh Chahal and Pawan Negi.
But among foreign players there are some worrying factors as key pace bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile has been ruled out of the tournament owing to injuries. Former Mumbai Indians player Corey Anderson replaced Coulter-Nile through the Registered and Available Player Pool (RAPP) rule. Apart from this no other major concern is there for the team.
So, with almost a balanced team for the 11th edition and a strong bench strength, Bengaluru, which finished at the bottom in the previous edition, will look to take an advantage and aim to lay hands on the title they had claimed in 2011.
Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Sarfaraz Khan, Chris Woakes, Yuzvendra Singh Chahal, Umesh Yadav, Brendon McCullum, Washington Sundar, Navdeep Saini, Quinton De Kock, Mohammed Siraj, Corey Anderson, Colin De Grandhomme, M. Ashwin, Parthiv Patel, Moeen Ali, Mandeep Singh, Manan Vohra, Pawan Negi, Tim Southee, Kulwant Khejroliya, Aniket Choudhary, Pavan Deshpande, Anirudha Ashok Joshi.