Faf du Plessis had a sluggish start but came back to play a vital hit


Faf du Plessis, the new captain of the Royal Challengers Bangalore, pounded the Punjab Kings attack into submission with his 88, leading his side to 205 for 2 in their Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 match on Sunday. The South African skipper demonstrated his six-hitting skills with seven maximums in a 57-ball innings. The former captain, Virat Kohli contributed a brilliant 41 off 29 balls. Late in the innings, wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik joined the party with a quickfire 32 not out off just 14 balls.

After Du Plessis and Anuj Rawat (21) had built the framework with their 50-run partnership, Kohli and Du Plessis added 118 runs for the second wicket.

RCB scored 11 'extra' runs off Arshdeep Singh's second over. As RCB raced to 23/0, Du Plessis blasted his first boundary in the third over, while Rawat scored his first maximum in the same over.

In the sixth over, Rawat blasted consecutive boundaries off Odean Smith. Rawat's stay was cut short in the seventh over as leg-spinner Rahul Chahar (1/22) cleaned him up.

Kohli entered the room and took some time to settle in.

Kohli's first maximum came in the 10th over, when RCB acquired 13 runs off it, and the foundation was established for a massive total at 70/1.

The former South Africa captain made the most of it and then increased the ante, as the carnage began in the 12th over with a booming six off Liam Livingstone.

Odean Smith was brutalised by Du Plessis, who smacked him for a boundary and two consecutive sixes.

Kohli was in his groove, hitting a four and two sixes and playing strokes at will. When Du Plessis was in full flow, he, on the other hand, was second fiddle.

The damage had already been done when Du Plessis was dismissed in the 18th over.

Karthik's quick-fire 32 off only 14 balls, which included three sixes and as many fours, propelled RCB past the 200-run mark.

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