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IANS

Virat Kohli (58) and Rajit Patidar (52) struck fine half-centuries as Royal Challengers Bangalore posted 170/6 in 20 overs against Gujarat Titans in Match 43 of IPL 2022 at the Brabourne Stadium here on Saturday.

Kohli, former India and Royal Challengers captain who was advised by former team India coach Ravi Shastri to take a break from IPL to revitalize his batting, gave glimpses of a welcome return to form as he struck a fine half-century and raised 99 runs for the second wicket partnership with Rajat Patidar, who struck 52 off 32 deliveries as the two set up a platform from which RCB could have reached a score of 180.

Royal Challengers lost skipper Faf du Plessis for a duck, caught by keeper Wriddhiman Saha off Pradeep Sangwan, but Kohli took over the responsibility of scoring runs. He started cautiously but struck some glorious shots to score his first half-century of IPL 2022.

Kohli started by hitting his India team-mate Shami for back-to-back fours in the first round -- first a drive down past mid-off off a fuller delivery and second, a much better-looking shot whipped off his pads to deep square leg fence.

He meted out the same treatment to Alzarri Joseph, hitting two superb shots off the English pacer's first two deliveries in this match. That over cost Gujarat Titans 13 runs as Rajat Patidar too helped himself to a boundary. The 50 of the innings came in 39 balls.

In the 10th over, Kohli hammered Lockie Ferguson for a six and four off successive deliveries -- backing away and hitting him just over the long-on rope for maximum, and with Patidar blasting the final ball of the 10th over for a four. He found a good partner in Rajat Patidar, who scored a breezy 32-ball 52 to shore up RCB innings.

But both Kohli and Patidar were out in quick succession -- Patidar going first, caught by Shubhman Gill off Sangwan as he top-edged a pull, while Kohli was cleaned up by Shami with a well-placed yorker as the batter tried to make room.

Gujarat Titans reeled in RCB a bit as Dinesh Karthik too fell cheaply and Glenn Maxwell departed after an 18-ball 33, hitting three fours and two sixes during his brief cameo. Mahipal landed a couple of lusty blows in scoring 16 of eight balls as Royal Challengers reached a par score in their first-afternoon match in IPL 2022.

Brief scores: Royal Challengers Bangalore 170/6 in 20 overs (Virat Kohli 58, Rajat Patidar 52, Glenn Maxwell 33; Pradeep Sangwan 2/19, Rashid Khan 1/29) against Gujarat Titans.

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