With less than a week left for the completion of the league stage of Indian Premier League 2020, the tournament has been offering some fantastic matches. In what promises to be a thriller of a clash, the resurgent Kings Xl Punjab will lock horns with the bottom dwellers Rajasthan Royals. The 50th match of the IPL 2020 is scheduled to be played at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
The Punjab who were languishing at the bottom of the table after their first seven matches, are now making a spirited run as the KL Rahul led side are unbeaten in the five matches. They are currently placed 4th in the points table and they will need to win this to make things easier for them and hope the KKR side lose their clash against the Men in Yellow. While the RR are still mathematically in contention but they will have to win their remaining matches on humongous margins. A defeat here for the RR would put them out of the contention.
The last time the two sides met, the fans were treated with one of the best run chases in the history of the sport. The coin fell in favor of the RR and they chose to chase down the score. KXPI with the help of their in-form opener KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal notched up a score of 223 on the board, with the captain scoring 69 of 54 balls and his fellow opener Mayank Agarwal scored a vivacious 106 of 50 balls.
The RR did have a good start courtesy of the young Sanju Samson, who scored a fluent 85. But at 161/3 in 16 overs, the match looked done and dusted for the Royals. But the spirited RR all-rounder Rahul Tewatia had other plans as he took Sheldon Cottrell for a ride by scoring 5 sixes of the 18th over.
Both the teams will come into the match on the back of dominating wins. The Kings XI Punjab had a comfortable 8- wicket win over the Kolkata Knight Riders. While, the Rajasthan Royals showcased some high level of cricket as they managed to chase down the score of 195 posted against the mighty Mumbai Indians courtesy of a magnificent century from the star English all- rounder Ben Stokes.
Can KXIP make it six in a row? Or will the Rajasthan Royals continue to stay in the contention?
Match Toss Time: 17:30 Local (19:00 IST)
Match Start Time: 18:00 Local (19:30 IST)
Match Venue: Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
The conditions are well in favor of cricket as no chance of rain whatsoever. The temperature is expected to be hovering in the 27-30 degree range. At peak, the humidity is expected to reach the 63 percent mark.
The pitch in Abu Dhabi has been on the slower side but the batsmen seem to have well adjusted to the conditions as close to 400 runs were scored in the last encounter between the Mumbai Indians and the Rajasthan Royals. The due was seen playing a vital role in the last game and is expected to play a role once again.
Anything above the 170 mark could put the team chasing in a spot of bother.
The KXIP have been doing a wonderful job and the injury of Mayank Agarwal has not cost them much as his replacement Mandeep Singh has been delivering the goods. With the bowling line-up also doing a good job. The KXIP management would be more than happy to feature the same Xl that handed them a comfortable win against the Kolkata Knight Riders.
The Rajasthan Royals are having an up and down season, as consistency seems to be the major issue for them this season. Said that, the team did a wonderful job against the MI and the fact their key player- Ben Stokes is back to form would be a huge plus for them. After the win against the table toppers, the management and captain would not want to fiddle with the current line- up.
Probable Playing Xl
Kings Xl Punjab (KXIP): KL Rahul (c & wk), Mandeep Singh, Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, Glenn Maxwell, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan, Murugan Ashwin, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh
Rajasthan Royals (RR): Robin Uthappa, Ben Stokes, Sanju Samson (wk), Jos Buttler, Steven Smith (c), Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Ankit Rajpoot, Kartik Tyagi
KXIP vs RR Fantasy Team
Nicholas Pooran, KL Rahul, Mandeep Singh, Chris Gayle, Steven Smith, Robin Uthappa, Ben Stokes, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohammad Shami, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal
Captain Picks: KL Rahul (KXIP), Steven Smith (RR)
Vice- Captain: Jofra Archer (RR), Ben Stokes (RR)
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