It’s another weekend and it’s another terrible price about Royal Challengers Bangalore. It is our duty, with barely concealed incredulity, to point out that Bangalore go into another match at odds on.
This time they play Kolkata Knight Riders, who were in second-position in the table, at home with the visitors needing one more win to ensure qualification. That is a scenario the bungling Bengalurus could only dream of.
Before their match against Kings XI, Bangalore were bottom of the section with two wins from just 11 matches. They had a net run rate of minus 1.4, which takes some doing in 888Sport and other green listed bookmakers.
And yet they go off at 1.9 versus Kolkata, the second-best team in the tournament. How can that be? We say this every week but the bookies just don’t seem to learn.
Paddy Power offer those odds and, incredibly, Bet365 go even shorter at 1.85. They make Kolkata the same price by the way. So we call out Bwin on two fronts. If you can’t make your mind up you go 1.9 the pair, not cream off more from the top. It is pretty gutless to be unable to take a view with two teams who have such wildly different records.
So you have our blessing to take Power’s offer of 1.9 or Bet Stars’ on Kolkata. They have struggled of late but we expect them to hit back.
They have lost their last two matches against Sunrisers Hyderabad and Rising Pune Supergiant. Momentarily perhaps they have lost their discipline in the field and went for monster runs against Hyderabad. And then their batting faltered against Pune.
But they should be able to recall Robin Uthappa after he missed that match. He is their second-highest runscorer and for such an important game they will risk him even if he has a niggle.
Kolkata should feel confident of the win, not least because the Bangalore pitch should suit their spin bowlers. They also have the Indian sign over Bangalore.
It was Kolkata who inflicted Bangalore’s worst defeat of the season, the nadir which proved that all was not well in the camp.
After being restricted to just 131, KKR tore through the much-vaunted batting line-up to raze them for just 49, a record-breaking low total. Pacers Chris Woakes and Nathan Coulter-Nile took three wickets apiece.
Woakes is still available for KKR after England allowed him to remain with the franchise instead of playing in the one-day series against Ireland. He should lead the way in another Bangalore humbling.