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Two teams, two wins, and separation via net run-rate, everything will change its course again as Delhi capitals take on Kolkata Knight Riders in the 16th match of the IPL 2020. The match is scheduled for October 3 at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. Delhi has two wins in their bag, with their first coming in a Super Over with KXIP and the second one being comfortable against CSK.

They could’ve clinched their third on the row too as they restricted SRH to 162, courtesy of their front-line bowler Kagiso Rabada but their batting department failed to capitalize. While we talk about KKR, their opening game was a mess against the defending champions MI but they showed a part of their potential in the next game.

Shubman Gill remained unbeaten on 70 in a successful chase against SRH, repeating his performance against after scoring 47 in a 37-run victory against the dominant looking RR. However, their latest victory was a result of the young guns putting it together for the franchise as KKR depicted a strong message from their criticized bowling department.

Can KKR do it again? Or will DC continue to be one of the favorites this year?

Head to Head

Matches: 24, DC: 10, KKR:13, N/R: 1

Team News

Delhi Capitals

Ravichandran Ashwin’s absence would hurt DC but Shreyas Iyer and Co. will be sticking to the previous XI that played against SRH. DC may have lost the game but they knew that it was just not their batting department’s day. The same batting line-up has always put up numbers due to individual signs of brilliance and DC feel they don’t need to play with the stability of their side.

Kolkata Knight Riders

After seeing victories in their last two games, KKR is expected to announce an unchanged XI too. Shubman Gill is finally living on all the expectations and standards he’s set in the past. With the game being played at Sharjah, Gill will be hoping to score a hattrick on influential scores for his team. Andre Russell would also look to regain his form as the team finally seems to have acquired stability, while Eoin Morgan will be probably pushed up the order.

Pitch and Conditions: The mass of runs scored at Sharjah this season shows that the game will be a thriller again. Both the teams have an explosive batting order and a tight run chase is what is anticipated from the game.

The temperature did not drop in the evening in the earlier games and thus, it is expected to remain the same. A hot and clear evening. Humidity is expected to be negligible and only the tempo of the game may shift here and there.

Probable playing XI

Delhi Capitals: Shikhar Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw, Shreyas Iyer (C), Rishabh Pant (WK), Shimron Hetmeyer, Marcus Stoinis, Axar Patel, Anrich Nortje, Amit Mishra, Kagiso Rabada, Ishant Sharma.

Kolkata Knight Riders: Shubman Gill, Sunil Narine, Nitish Rana, Andre Russell, Dinesh Karthik (C & WK), Eoin Morgan, Pat Cummins, Shivam Mavi, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Kuldeep Yadav, Varun Chakravarthy.

Key Battles

Kagiso Rabada vs Shubman Gill

Kagiso Rabada vs Shubman Gill

Although Gill has finally picked up his form with consistency, he will have to pass a tough test as and when he faces Rabada. Since Rabada’s debut in the IPL, he has undoubtedly been one of the most lethal pacers in the competition and effective enough not just in the powerplay but also in the death overs.

His line and length have been apt and his bouncers have been sharp, causing bowlers to first commit and then become prey to it as his variation in pace is also beautiful. Gill though has enough potential to play face the pacer but the question is will he make the most of the Sharjah pitch or will Rabada continue his demolition with the ball?

Rishabh Pant vs Sunil Narine

Rishabh Pant vs Sunil Narine  IPL
Rishabh Pant vs Sunil Narine

This will be a battle between strength and guts. Pant is known as a hard-hitter of the cricket ball and his sixes seem massive despite the dimensions of the ground. Considering that the game is played at Sharjah, Pant will be eyeing his perfect resurrection in the tournament as a fastpitch will complement his hitting.

However, everyone knows hitting Narine for boundaries is not a beginner’s game. Narine despite his cramped action has been very accurate throughout the several IPLs he’s now been a part of. His economy speaks for himself and his batting as a slogger has added more to his arsenal.

A good game for either here will help the team first but will also account for their own personal development.

Prediction

The game can go either way. However, a lot depends on the toss now. Especially this season, almost every captain even the captain cool has misjudged the conditions at times. So far in the tournament, many teams have shown ambition to chase but very few among them have successfully gone through the line.

Cricwizz predicts KKR to win the game.