Glenn Maxwell hit his second successive half-century to fire the Royal Challengers Bangalore to a convincing seven-wicket win over the Rajasthan Royals in Dubai on Wednesday.
The Australian batting all-rounder made an unbeaten 50 off 30 deliveries as Bangalore chased down their victory target of 150 in 17.1 overs.
Bowlers set up the team’s second straight win with paceman Harshal Patel taking three wickets and spinners Shahbaz Ahmed and Yuzvendra Chahal claiming two each to restrict Rajasthan to 149-9.
Virat Kohli’s Bangalore stay third on the eight-team table, led by the Chennai Super Kings, and eye a strong league finish in their bid for a maiden title.
“We have come back strongly in two games back to back with the ball which is great,” said Kohli, who will step down as captain of the side at the end of this season. “It means we are heading in the right direction.”
Kohli, who hit 25, and Devdutt Padikkal, who scored 22, started briskly for the opening wicket to lay the foundation for the chase.
Srikar Bharat (44) and Maxwell put on a third-wicket stand of 69 to take the attack to the opposition bowlers despite Bangladesh left-arm quick Mustafizur Rahman striking twice.
Bharat fell short of his fifty but Maxwell, who made a match-winning 56 in the previous game, completed his 50 with two straight boundaries.
Earlier, the Royals collapsed from a comfortable 100-1 in 11 overs to 117-5 with debutant left-arm quick George Garton sending back Evin Lewis for 56 and Ahmed striking twice in his first over.
Chahal also struck twice to return impressive figures of 2-18 from his four overs of leg-spin and was named man of the match.
Patel, who got a hat-trick in his team’s previous win, rattled the middle and lower order and struck on successive deliveries.
The Royals, winners of the inaugural edition in 2008, are seventh on the table.
“We don’t have anything to lose. That kind of mindset brings a lot of freedom, have seen some funny things happen,” said Rajasthan skipper Sanju Samson.
© Agence France-Presse