Kolkata Knight Riders Vs Rajasthan Royals Eliminator Match prediction
Tournament: Indian Premier League
Home Team: Kolkata Knight Riders
Away Team: Rajasthan Royals
Date: 23th May 2018
Eden Gardens, Kolkata
Kolkata Knight Riders and Rajasthan Royals will come up against each other in the Eliminator – the second of the VIVO IPL 2018 Playoff matches. The two teams have to play their best cricket; there will be absolutely no room for mediocrity, for only the winner will progress in the competition and take a step closer to the Final.
KKR finished the league season in the third position; they won 8 of their 14 group-stage matches, including a run of three wins in their last three matches to charge into the playoffs. In their last league fixture of the season, they defeated table-toppers Sunrisers Hyderabad in Hyderabad.
Rajasthan Royals just managed to sneak into the top four. At one stage – after their ninth match on May 6, RR had only three wins and were placed at the bottom of the table. Then the turnaround, with Jos Buttler playing three consecutive match-winning knocks. In their last league match, the Rajasthan Royals – sans Buttler, Ben Stokes and without the services of mentor Shane Warne in the dugout – defeated favourites Royal Challengers Bangalore by 30 runs to stay alive in the race to the playoffs. The Gods smiled, other results then fell in favour, and RR made the top-four cut
Six KKR batsman have scored in excess of 250 runs this season. But the two biggest match-winners for the men in purple and gold are the opener Sunil Narine and captain Dinesh Karthik in the middle-order. The numbers illustrate their importance best.
Royals will look towards their Indian trio – Rahul Tripathi, Ajinkya Rahane, and Sanju Samson – to score the bulk of the runs. Right at the top is where Tripathi belongs and feels comfortable; the 27-year old will carry the confidence of a match-winning unbeaten 80 in the previous match. Tripathi will have fond memories of playing at the Eden Gardens too; it was at this venue that he scored his highest score in the IPL (93). Rahane and Samson have gone off the boil in recent times, and this big-stakes match presents a great opportunity to make a substantial contribution.
Jofra Archer is the one pacer from both sides who is most likely to cause substantial damage with the ball. The 23-year old, Rajasthan Royals’ highest wicket-taker this season, has set the speed gun on fire too; he has bowled two of the three fastest deliveries this season
One can expect plenty of trial by spin in this contest, for both teams have outstanding spinners. KKR’s Sunil Narine, Kuldeep Yadav, and Piyush Chawla have strangled many an opponent this season, as have RR’s K Gowtham and Shreyas Gopal.
Head to Head
Overall: Matches – 17, Kolkata Knight Riders won – 8, Rajasthan Royals won – 9
At the Eden Gardens: Matches – 6, Kolkata Knight Riders won – 5, Rajasthan Royals won – 1
In VIVO IPL 2018: In Jaipur – KKR won by 7 wickets, In Kolkata – KKR won by 6 wickets.
Kolkata Knight Riders:
1 Chris Lynn, 2 Sunil Narine, 3 Robin Uthappa, 4 Nitish Rana, 5 Dinesh Karthik (capt & wk), 6 Andre Russell, 7 Shubman Gill, 8 Piyush Chawla, 9 Javon Searles, 10 Kuldeep Yadav, 11 Prasidh Krishna
1 Rahul Tripathi, 2 Ajinkya Rahane (capt), 3 Sanju Samson, 4 Heinrich Klaase, 5 Stuart Binny, 6 K Gowtham, 7 Jofra Archer, 8 Shreyas Gopal, 9 Ish Sodhi, 10 Jaydev Unadkat, 11 Ben Laughlin
Kolkata Knight Riders have scored the highest boundary percentage this season; they’ve realised 65.43% of their runs through boundaries. The Rajasthan Royals are at the other extreme of the list; they have the lowest boundary percentage (52.78% runs through boundaries).
The Kolkata Knight Riders have conceded 8 50-plus opening partnerships in their last 10 matches.
The Kolkata Knight Riders have the most productive spin bowling attack in VIVO IPL 2018; their spinners have so far taken a total of 45 wickets. The Rajasthan Royals meanwhile have the most economical spin bowling attack; their spinners have an overall economy rate of 7.45.
The Kolkata Knight Riders have an identical 4-3 win-loss record home and away this season; the Rajasthan Royals have won only 2 of their 7 matches on the road.
Rajasthan Royals Win The Match
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