Rajasthan Royals will host the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur on Sunday. Both teams are riding high after recording victories in their last match against the same opposition.
KKR came from behind to beat Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) by 5 wickets after Andre Russell’s heroics. Rajasthan Royals (RR) also emerged victorious against RCB after they chased down their target of 159 runs at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
KKR are placed second in the points table with three wins in four matches and they will look to consolidate their position in Jaipur.
RR have been reliant on Jos Buttler to provide the team with good starts and he hasn’t disappointed. In the bowling department, Jofra Archer and Krishnappa Gowtham have impressed for RR. Sanju Samson is likely to return to the playing XI after recovering from injury.
Rajasthan bowlers Jofra Archer, Jaidev Unadkat and Ben Stokes have leaked runs in the death overs. They will have to rethink their strategy after Russell’s sensational display of power hitting (48 off 13 balls) against Royal Challengers Bangalore.
While star players, including Steve Smith and Ben Stokes, have failed to live up to the expectations, the likes of Sanju Samson, who had hit first ton of this IPL, Jos Buttler and captain Ajinkya Rahane have been good. Smith, although, scored 38 against RCB.
Russell and Nitish Rana scored big in their match against RCB to take KKR over the line. Rana has been in good touch during the tournament so far with 169 runs at an average of 42.
KKR’s bowling department, led by Sunil Naraine, Kuldeep Yadav and Piyush Chawla, will look to exploit the wicket at Sawai Man Singh Stadium, which has played slow and low recently.
KKR will head to the game with the belief that the side can win from any situation, which they have demonstrated time and again.
Both teams will also have to deal with the soaring heat in the the Pink City with temperatures nearing 40 degrees celsius.
Rajasthan Royals: Steve Smith, Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, Jos Buttler, Ashton Turner, Ish Sodhi, Oshane Thomas, Liam Livingstone, Ajinkya Rahane, Sanju Samson, Shubham Ranjane, Stuart Binny, Shreyas Gopal, Sudhesan Midhun, Jaydev Unadkat, Prashant Chopra, Mahipal Lomror, Aryaman Birla, Riyan Parag, Dhawal Kulkarni, Krishnappa Gowtham, Varun Aaron, Shashank Singh, Manan Vohra, Rahul Tripathi
Kolkata Knight Riders: Dinesh Karthik (capt), Robin Uthappa, Chris Lynn, Shubman Gill, Andre Russell, Carlos Brathwaite, Sunil Narine, Piyush Chawla, Kuldeep Yadav, Nitish Rana, Nikhil Naik, Joe Denly, Shrikant Mundhe, Sandeep Warrier, Prasidh Krishna, Lockie Ferguson, Harry Gurney, KC Cariappa and Yarra Prithviraj