The 2020 Indian Premier League campaign was a good one for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, especially when one compares it to the three previous seasons. A playoff appearance is not an easy thing to achieve in the world’s most popular T20 league, after all. The franchise knows that all too well.

But the season ended in much the same way as the three previous three: No trophy to show for and plenty of questions about Virat Kohli’s captaincy.

IPL 2020 started well for RCB but it ended with five consecutive defeats and that is when everyone started talking about whether the team needs to look elsewhere for leadership. With the bat, Kohli had a strictly par season, despite being the team’s second-highest scorer, mainly due to a poor strike-rate.

Still, there were some bright spots for the team as well. Devdutt Padikkal carried his good form from domestic cricket into the IPL too. His poise and timing stood out and he will certainly be one to watch out for in the future. Washington Sundar was brilliant in the Powerplay for RCB and showed that he is back to his best. Similarly, Mohammad Siraj gave a glimpse of the wild talent that makes followers of domestic cricket rate him highly. If he can become more consistent, RCB already possesses the core they need for the future.

RCB's results in every IPL season

Season League stage finish Playoff result
IPL 2008 7th
IPL 2009 3rd Lost final
IPL 2010 4th Lost in semi-final
IPL 2011 4th out of 10 Lost final
IPL 2012 5th out of 9
IPL 2013 5th out of 9
IPL 2014 7th
IPL 2015 3rd Won Eliminator, Lost Qualifier 2
IPL 2016 2nd Lost final
IPL 2017 8th
IPL 2018 6th
IPL 2019 8th
IPL 2020 4th Lost in Eliminator

RCB won three of their first four matches and Kohli kept talking about the work they put in before the start of the season. And it looked that way too. They seemed to have plans in place for every opposition and more importantly, their bowlers were executing those plans too with the odd mishap.

The wins kept rolling in. They won seven out of their first 10 matches. But then, they inexplicably lost their next five. They clearly need another finisher lower down the order and on the evidence of what we saw this season, Shivam Dube is not that man.

RCB's results in IPL 2020

Match Venue Result
SRH vs RCB Dubai RCB won by 10 runs
KXIP vs RCB Dubai RCB lost by 97 runs
RCB vs MI Dubai RCB won Super Over after a tied match
RCB vs RR Abu Dhabi RCB won by 8 wickets
RCB vs DC Dubai RCB lost by 59 runs
CSK vs RCB Dubai RCB won by 37 runs
RCB vs KKR Sharjah RCB won by 82 runs
RCB vs KXIP Sharjah RCB lost by 8 wickets
RR vs RCB Dubai RCB won by 7 wickets
KKR vs RCB Abu Dhabi RCB won by 8 wickets
RCB vs CSK Dubai RCB lost by 8 wickets
MI vs RCB Abu Dhabi RCB lost by 5 wickets
RCB vs SRH Sharjah RCB lost by 5 wickets
DC vs RCB  Abu Dhabi RCB lost by 6 wickets
Abu Dhabi RCB lost by 6 wickets

Best performers

Padikkal and AB de Villiers were the batting stars of the season for RCB.

Padikkal, who was sort of dragged down by the absence of an in-form opening partner, was reduced to being a one-man army at the top of the order. He can play shots all around the wicket and he can play them with the grace that seems natural to left-handers.

ABD, on the other hand, did things only he can to win some matches almost single-handedly for RCB. Once again, RCB’s ‘alien’ had little support.

Kohli, Finch and Dube scored some runs but their SR’s were poor and that hurt the team in the middle overs. The galling inability to bat according the situation saw the team often struggle to take momentum into the death overs.

Most runs for RCB in IPL 2020

PLAYER Inns Runs HS Avg SR 50
Devdutt Padikkal 15 473 74 31.53 124.80 5
Virat Kohli 15 466 90* 42.36 121.35 3
AB de Villiers 14 454 73* 45.40 158.74 5
Aaron Finch 12 268 52 22.33 111.20 1
Shivam Dube 9 129 27* 18.42 122.85 0

Chahal was the undoubted star with the ball for RCB. The fearless manner in which he flights the ball is a lesson for all other spinners in the game and time and again, he came to RCB’s rescue during the season. His 21 wickets (with a brilliant economy rate of 7.08) were way ahead of all the other bowlers in the team.

Chahal’s brilliance also highlighted RCB’s biggest weakness – the lack of wicket-taking bowlers. If you don’t take wickets in the T20 format, you will never be able to hold down the opposition to manageable totals and more often than not, that is what happened to the RCB. In Chris Morris, they found a dependable overseas star while Washington performed his role pretty well but the attack lacked teeth at critical moments.

Most wickets for RCB in IPL 2020

PLAYER Inns Wkts BBI Avg Econ SR 4w
Yuzvendra Chahal 15 21 3/18 19.28 7.08 16.33 0
Chris Morris 9 11 4/26 19.09 6.63 17.27 1
Mohammed Siraj 9 11 3/8 21.45 8.68 14.81 0
Washington Sundar 15 8 2/16 37.25 5.96 37.50 0
Isuru Udana 10 8 2/41 35.25 9.72 21.75 0

Still, compared to their performances of the recent, this was a pretty good season for the new management in place and changes must be resisted on that front. They lost steam in the end but before that happened, they did enough to give their die-hard fans hope for the future.

Video highlights of all RCB matches in IPL 2020

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Highlights videos courtesy: