The responsibility of leading RCB would remain with Shane Watson in the absence of South African de Villiers. Watson was instrumental in RCB's 15-run win against Delhi. Although Watson was able to get just one wicket, but he bowled extremely well, especially in the death overs, conceding just 21-runs in his allotted four overs. He choked Amit Mishra for runs and conceded just 2-runs in the penultimate over of the game, also ensuring that the well set Rishabh Pant remained at the non-striker's end.
What also surprised many was Watson's decision of asking Pawan Negi to bowl the last over of the game, which proved to be a master stroke, as Negi dismissed the dangerous Rishabh Pant who looked in ominous form and could have won the match for the Delhi Daredevils.
RCB, who play their third match in the tournament today, began their IPL 2017 campaign by losing to the defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad in the tournament opener.
In the absence of Kohli and AB, the batting department of RCB now rests mostly on the shoulders of Chris Gayle and Kedar Jadhav. While Chris Gayle has had an ordinary start to the tournament, Jadhav has looked impressive with his 37-ball knock of 69 against Delhi.
On the other hand, Kings XI Punjab are upbeat after having beaten Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) in their tournament opener under their new skipper Glenn Maxwell. Maxwell who scored a quickfire 44 off just 20 balls while chasing the target in the opening game, looks in sublime form and would like to continue from where he had left at the Holkar stadium in today's match, a ground which is the second home venue for KXIP after Mohali.
Besides, KXIP looks a replenished side now after induction of eight new players this season including Eoin Morgan, Martin Guptill and Darren Sammy, while also retaining their core team from the previous season.
The conditions will favour the home side Punjab more today as the team has been practicing at the venue for the past 10 days now. As it has been the case in most of the games so far, the side winning the toss will prefer to field first.
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