The Indian Premier League has witnessed 45 matches so far and with just 11 more matches to go, the season is getting heated up like never before. After the intriguing weekend of double- header action, the IPL is back to the routine single- header in the form of Kolkata Knight Riders taking on the Kings Xl Punjab. The 46th match of the Indian Premier League 2020 is scheduled to take place at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.
Kolkata Knight Riders bounced back well after their back to back losses as they defeated the in-form Delhi Capitals by a comfortable margin of 59 runs. The Kolkata side are placed 4th in the points table with 6 wins and a win here would definitely make them the favorites to make it to the play- offs. KXIP on the other hand with 10 points are placed one below the KKR on the points table.
The previous encounter between two sides saw an intense finish which went in favor of the Kolkata side. KKR after winning the toss elected to bat first and with the help of half- centuries from their opener Shubman Gill and captain Dinesh Karthik, they managed to notch up a score of 164. KXIP were once again given an exceptional start by their openers as they looked well in place to win the match at 144/2 in 18th over. But the brilliance of Sunil Narine and Prasidh Krishna made sure the Punjab choked again and ended up on the losing side by 2 runs.
Both the teams will come into the match on the back of wins as KXIP managed to defend a below par score of 126 against the SRH. While, the KKR after a string of poor batting performances bounced back well to score a huge total of 194/6. The table toppers DC never looked in the game as they kept losing wickets at regular intervals and ended up on the losing side by 59 runs.
A win here for the KKR would make their situation much better. While, a win for the KXIP would mean they climb up the ladder and take the place of KKR as KXIP have a better net run rate then the two champions champions.
Can KKR replicate their last performance? Or will KL Rahul and Co. make it five out five?
Match Toss Time: 17:30 Local (19:00 IST)
Match Start Time: 18:00 Local (19:30 IST)
Match Venue: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah
The conditions have been well in favor of the sport and is expected to be the same way throughout the tournament. The temperature is expected to be hovering the 29 degree range. While, the humidity is expected to be on the lower side- around the 50-52 % range.
The pitch in Sharjah has been much friendly to the batsmen. Though we saw in the last match the CSK side were taken for a spin by the MI bowlers. The chase, though a low target, was made to look easy by the MI batsmen. It could be an indication that the pitch is still a good one for batting. Though a score of 200 looks unlikely, anywhere in 180 whereabouts would definitely put the team chasing in trouble.
KKR would be glad to have the West- Indian all- rounder Sunil Narine back to the playing line- up. While his inclusion definitely boosted the KKR team as after a losing streak, they finally managed to bounce back. After showcasing a wonderful performance against the DC, the KKR management is likely to feature the same Xl for this encounter, with the only change may be the of Andre Russell replacing the pacer Lockie Ferguson.
The KXIP have not reported any injuries and the team looks to be doing a wonderful job in the last few games. The Punjab team being undefeated in the four games would mean that they would not want to fiddle with the winning combination and could feature the same team that handed them a win over the Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Probable Playing Xl
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR): Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Eoin Morgan (c), Dinesh Karthik (wk), Sunil Narine, Pat Cummins, Lockie Ferguson/Andre Russell, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Prasidh Krishna, Varun Chakravarthy
Kings Xl Punjab (KXIP): KL Rahul (c & wk), Mandeep Singh, Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, Glenn Maxwell, Deepak Hooda, Murugan Ashwin, Chris Jordan, Mohammed Shami, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh
KKR vs KXIP Fantasy Team
KL Rahul, Nicholas Pooran, Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Chris Gayle, Sunil Narine, Glenn Maxwell, Varun Chakravarthy, Pat Cummins, Asrhdeep Singh, Mohammad Shami
Captain Picks: Chris Gayle (KXIP), Nicholas Pooran (KXIP)
Vice- Captain Picks: KL Rahul (KXIP), Sunil Narine (KKR)
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