IPL 2023 Playoffs: How Virat Kohli’s RCB Can Face Gautam Gambhir’s LSG For 3rd Time This Season | Cricket News
The Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 season is nearing its business end, with franchises looking to put in error-free performances in order to end the league stage of the campaign in the top 4 spots. So far, defending champions Gujarat Titans are the only ones who have qualified for the next round while a total of seven teams are competing for the three remaining spots. Royal Challengers Bangalore and Lucknow Super Giants are two of those teams who are still in the fray.
RCB and LSG, who have already faced each other twice this season, winning one match each, have arguably produced the most ‘engaging contests’, both on the field and off it. The altercations that Virat Kohli had with Gautam Gambhir and Naveen-ul-Haq haven’t died down completely in the minds of fans who are still wondering if there’s a way the two franchises can square off again.
Since both the teams are still within the shout to qualify for the playoffs, it is quite possible for LSG and RCB to square off once again this season. But, for that to happen, both of them would need to finish the league campaign among the top 4 sides.
Scenario 1:LSG (15 points in 13 games) beat KKR to claim 17 points. Chennai Super Kings (15 points in 13 games) beat Delhi Capitals to end league campaign on 17 points too. But, they beat LSG to the second spot on the basis of a higher Net Run Rate. CSK have a better NRR to LSG at present.
RCB win their remaining two matches — against SRH and GT — to claim 16 points and finish 4th in the points table. Such a situation sets up RCB vs LSG clash in the Eliminator.
Scenario 2: LSG beat KKR by a significant margin to claim 17 points to finish second. This is possible if CSK (15 points) lose their last game or if they have an inferior NRR to LSG despite taking 17 points. LSG then lose the Qualifier 1 against Gujarat Titans to head to Qualifier 2.
RCB beat SRH and GT to finish on 16 points. The Faf du Plessis-led franchise then win Eliminator against Chennai Super Kings to take on LSG in the Qualifier 2.
Scenario 3:LSG finish 2nd, as explained above, and win Qualifier 1 to enter the final.
RCB, having finished 3rd or 4th, secure victories in both the Eliminator and Qualifier 2 to set up the final clash with LSG.
Scenario 4:LSG lose their final league game against Kolkata Knight Riders to remain on 15 points. But, other results fall into place for the Lucknow franchise to finish in the top 4.
RCB finish with 16 points to go 3rd or win only one of their remaining two games to end the season on 14 points. Other results fall into place for the Bengaluru side to finish in top 4 (in case of only one win out of the remaining two). The two teams then face each other in Eliminator.
Scenario 5: LSG lose their final league game against KKR and remain at 15 points. In that case, qualification will depend on other games as well as net run rate. RCB, on the other hand, win their last two matches to reach 16 points and finish second due to the other results going their way. In that case, RCB can face LSG either in Qualifier 2 (if they lose to Gujarat Titans in Qualifier 1) or in the final if they win Qualifier 1 and LSG win both Eliminator as well as Qualifier 2.
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