The 14th season of the Indian Premier League will get underway when defending champions Mumbai Indians will face Royal Challengers Bangalore in the opening match. Mumbai Indians will begin the contest as favourites but Royal Challengers Bangalore captain Virat Kohli has urged his teammates to believe in themselves before the opening clash of the season.
Kohli feels it is crucial for the team to have faith in his own strengths and abilities rather than think about the opposition’s game. The RCB skipper added that the team who performs better on a particular day and in crunch situations has a higher chance of winning the game.
In the T20 format, any team has a chance to beat any on their day and Kohli wants his players to play with intensity and confidence. Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore have locked horns with each other in 29 matches in the IPL, in which the former has won 19 games whereas the latter has won 10 matches.
Speaking on Royal Challengers Bangalore’s YouTube channel on the eve of their first game, Virat Kohli said: “I truly believe we have to focus on our skills and our strengths as aside. Mumbai obviously is a champion team. They know how to win this competition. We know the strength of their team. So if we focus too much on that, we are not going to be able to focus on what we can do. At the end of the day, you are playing cricket. It’s a game that is played on the day, in the moment and in that moment. You could be better than any other guy in the world if you believe yourself to be. So we have to have belief in our team.”
Meanwhile, both the teams had taken on each other twice in the previous season of the IPL, in which both of them had won a match apiece. Kohli added that it is always an exciting challenge to face Mumbai Indians, as they have a potent squad.
“Coming up against Mumbai is always an exciting challenge. Last year we had two exciting games. We won one, they won the second one, which was obviously close, and they came through because they have such a strong team. So we expect a great game to start off the IPL. I can’t think of a more exciting or a highly skilled game to start off this IPL.” Virat Kohli added.
RCB had qualified for the playoff stages in the previous season but their journey had ended when they lost to Sunrisers Hyderabad in the first Eliminator. The franchise has roped in players like Glenn Maxwell and Kyle Jamieson in IPL 2021 auction.
RCB will begin their IPL campaign against five-time champions Mumbai Indians on 9th April, at Chepauk Stadium, Chennai.