The Indian Meteorological Department has forecasted “heavy rain/thundershowers associated with gusty winds (40-50 kph)” for parts of Bengaluru on May 18. This weather prediction looms over the much-anticipated RCB vs CSK match, which is crucial for both teams’ playoff aspirations in IPL 2024.

Recent Weather in Bengaluru

Bengaluru has experienced consistent rainfall over the past couple of weeks following a period of unusually hot weather. While the city was relatively dry on May 15 and 16, central Bengaluru, where the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium is located, experienced overnight rain into the morning of May 17. Despite cloudy skies throughout the morning, the rain held off in the evening, allowing both teams to conduct uninterrupted net sessions.

Saturday’s Weather Forecast

The forecast for Saturday is not promising, with predictions of thunderstorms and showers in the evening. According to accuweather.com, the temperature at the 7:30 PM match start time is expected to be around 23°C with 100% cloud cover.

Impact on the Match

A washout would eliminate RCB’s chances of making the playoffs. Having lost seven of their first eight games, RCB has made a remarkable comeback, winning five matches in a row to stay in contention. They currently have 12 points and a net run rate (NRR) of 0.387, while CSK sits at 14 points with an NRR of 0.538. To surpass CSK’s NRR and secure a playoff spot, assuming a score of 200, RCB needs to beat CSK by 18 runs or chase the target with about 11 balls to spare. A rain-shortened match would complicate this task.

For CSK, the scenario is simpler: a win, a washout, or even a narrow defeat would be enough for them to join Kolkata Knight Riders, Rajasthan Royals, and Sunrisers Hyderabad in the final four.

Chinnaswamy Stadium’s Drainage System

One positive note is the excellent drainage system at Chinnaswamy Stadium. The ground is equipped with a subsurface aeration system that allows play to resume just 30 minutes after rain stops, offering some hope for the match to proceed despite the forecast.

Team Reactions

Dwayne Bravo, the CSK bowling coach, emphasised the importance of focusing on controllable factors. “The weather and these kinds of things we don’t have control over,” Bravo said. “We don’t try to bring up things we don’t control. It’s another game for us to push for a playoff spot and we’re looking ahead to the challenge against a very good team tomorrow.”

BRAVO

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