IPL 2020, Match 54 preview: KKR vs RR- Team analysis, along with Fantasy XI
First Published 31, Oct 2020, 7:55 PM
Kolkata Knight Riders are currently placed sixth in the table, having won six matches and lost seven in 13 games. As for Rajasthan Royals, they are placed fifth on the table, having won and lost the same number of matches as KKR, while the former are ahead on a better net run-rate.
The Indian Premier League (IPL) has reached its business-end phase, as Match 54 would see former champions Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) take on fellow former champions Rajasthan Royals (RR). Being played in Dubai, on Sunday, it is a must-win for both the sides, as a loss would knock them out of contention for the playoffs.
KKR have been inconsistent throughout the season, as the midway captaincy change has done them no good. Meanwhile, RR have been inconsistent as well, but their reliance over Steve Smith's captaincy is still the biggest hope. In the same light, we present the match preview.
Current form: Considering the current state of both the teams, there is a conflicting difference. KKR are coming off a heartbreaking six-wicket loss against former champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK). Meanwhile, RR scripted a memorable seven-wicket win over Kings XI Punjab (KXIP).
Team composition: As for the squad composition for both, there is a notable distinction. While KKR are mostly balanced, they are slightly bowling heavy, especially with the possession of youth talent in abundance. As for RR, they too are a bit bowling heavy, with the only difference being that they have quite some big names in the department.
Head-to-head: To date, both the sides have faced each other on 22 occasions, with KKR winning 11 and RR winning 10, while a match was abandoned. In the two games in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), both have won apiece, while the last match ended in KKR's favour.
Weather and pitch report: As far as the weather is concerned, the temperature in Dubai is likely to be around 32 degrees, with a 50% chance of humidity. As for the pitch, it usually stays on the slower side. However, the new feel has allowed batsmen to score runs. Thus, any score around 170-180 could be antagonistic.
KKR: Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Eoin Morgan (c), Dinesh Karthik (wk), Sunil Narine, Shivam Mavi, Lockie Ferguson, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Varun Chakravarthy and Pat Cummins.
RR: Ben Stokes, Robin Uthappa, Steve Smith (c), Sanju Samson, Jos Buttler (WK), Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Varun Aaron, Jofra Archer, Kartik Tyagi and Shreyas Gopal.
Batsmen: Gill, Tripathi, Rana, Morgan- Gill and Tripathi can give the right start, while Rana and Morgan can consolidate in the middle, as has been the case in the past few games.
Wicketkeepers: Samson, Buttler- Both have been in a tremendous batting form of late and there very little doubt that the pair would fire again and earn points.
All-rounders: Tewatia, Stokes- Tewatia can come in handy with the ball, while he can finish things off with the bat as well. Stokes has risen to his flawless batting form and is most certainly to fire again.
Bowlers: Archer, Chakravarthy, Ferguson- Chakravarthy has been deadly with his spin of late and would garner enough points, while Archer and Ferguson are sure to dominate with the pace, as they have been doing so of late.
Players to watch out
Tripathi: The yielding batsman can bat literally anywhere in the line-up and score. However, he is most useful as an opener, as management would want him to fire in this tie.
Samson: The RR opener was initially good, before fading out, while he has gained momentum again. However, consistency has always been his weakness. Can he be consistent in this match is a million-dollar question.
Ferguson: The New Zealand pacer has been useful in the past three matches. However, he was at the receiving end in the previous game. It would be interesting to see if that holds him down, as the side desperately needs his services to qualify for the playoffs.