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IPL Match 18 Preview: Kings XI Punjab Vs Royal Challengers Bangalore

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It is the Royal Challengers Bangalore’s turn to try and stop the Punjab juggernaut when they face each other in Match 18 of IPL 2014 in Dubai on Monday.

Punjab have won 4 out of 4 games in the tourney so far and are marching ahead of the rest of pack by playing a truly fearless and exhilarating brand of cricket. While the likes of Glenn Maxwell and David Miller ruled the roost for the Kings XI in the first 3 games, it was their bowling unit, lead by young Indian seamer Sandeep Sharma and Aussie speedster Mitchell Johnson, who chipped-in in the last game to defend a very modest total against Kolkata and helped keep the winning momentum of the side going.

Bangalore, on the other hand hit a new low against the Rajathan Royals in their previous game as they were bundled out for just 70, despite their powerpacked batting line-up. Bangalore’s recent loss emphasizes the importance of momentum in this tournament as the Royal Challengers threw away a winning position against the Kolkata Knight Riders in their 3rd game, and thereby suffered due to lack of momentum in their last game.

There is still plenty of time to make amends for Virat Kohli side though, and they would be keen to redeem themselves immensely by beating the best team in the competition so far.

The wicket at Dubai played very well in the last game between Chennai and Mumbai, and it seems as though the ball will come onto the bat quite nicely this time around as well.

The favourable batting conditions will be welcome for both teams who were bowled for low totals in their previous games, and it will be interesting to see if Bangalore are ready to launch their monster batsman, Chris Gayle, for what will be their final outing in the UAE this season.

Likely teams:

Royal Challengers Bangalore: C Gayle/Y Takawale, Parthiv Patel, V Kohli, AB de Villiers, Yuvraj Singh, A Morkel, M Starc, S Rana, A Dinda, Y Chahal, V Aaron/R Rampaul

Kings XI Punjab: V Sehwag, C Pujara, G Maxwell, D Miller, W Saha, G Bailey, R Dhawan, A Patel, M Johnson, L Balaji, S Sharma