The 26th match in the ongoing season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) will be played between Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Delhi Capitals (DC) on Friday at The Eden Gardens, Kolkata.
KKR is currently placed second on the points table with eight points from four wins in six matches. Whereas, DC is currently on the sixth position with six points from three wins in six outings.
This will be the second encounter between these two teams. The earlier fixture was won by DC in the Super Over which was played at Delhi’s home ground.
Kagiso Rabada’s exceptions efforts to dismiss Andre Russell saw DC win the game by four runs. The South African speedster’s accuracy and the ability to bowl unplayable yorkers was the highlight of the game.
It was in that very game that Rabada showed the entire world where and how to bowl to Russell if you want to contain him.
Kolkata Knight Riders
Andre Russell has been the best performer for the outfit so far. He was the only batsman to score a fifty against Chennai Super Kings in the last game while others were dismissed cheaply.
Russell has more sixes than anyone else in the tournament and is the highest run-scorer for the KKR.
The other players in the Kolkata setup have played a few good innings but without Russell, the side would’ve struggled to win the number of matches it did. Chris Lynn, Sunil Narine, Robin Uthappa and Nitish Rana have all played little cameos in some matches but need to be more consistent going forward.
One big concern for the team would be Russell’s injury in the previous outing as he struggled with his wrist.
The bowling department of KKR has been expensive and has struggled to chip in with the wickets. Apart from the game against Rajasthan Royals, the team has given away 180+ scores on four occasions. KKR will most likely retain the same playing XI for this home fixture.
The Delhi side has been struggling to find the right balance and finish games this season. The team is full of match winners but on several instances, they have failed to deliver to their potential.
Prithvi Shaw is ultra-attacking at the top but he often plays too many risky shots and ends up losing his wicket. On the other hand, his opening partner, Shikhar Dhawan, needs to take more responsibility so that the Delhi franchise can post bigger targets.
Shaw would want to repeat his performance of 99 (55) against the same franchise as skipper Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant would fancy their chances on a batting friendly wicket.
DC’s middle-order has crumbled on several instances, an issue that would have been addressed in the team meetings. With Chris Morris, Kagiso Rabada and Sandeep Lamichhane, the franchise has a strong bowling attack.
Ishant Sharma might be replaced by Amit Sharma, while New Zealand speedster Trent Boult might replace Lamichhane. It will be an interesting contest as Delhi Capitals has a good bowling attack whereas KKR boasts of a strong batting line-up.
Former India skipper Sourav Ganguly, who is the president of Cricket Association of Bengal as well as adviser of the DC team, will find himself in a tough situation at the Eden Gardens as he has connections to both the camps.
Head to Head: 24 (Including one Champions League match)
KKR: 13 DC: 10 No Result: 1
KKR: Chris Lynn, Sunil Narine, Robin Uthappa, Nitish Rana, Shubman Gill, Dinesh Karthik (C and wk), Andre Russell, Kuldeep Yadav, Piyush Chawla, Prasidh Krishna, and Harry Gurney.
DC: Shikhar Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw, Shreyas Iyer (C), Rishabh Pant (wk), Colin Ingram, Chris Morris, Rahul Tewatia, Axar Patel, Kagiso Rabada, Trent Boult, and Amit Mishra.
(Featured Image: FB/DC)
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