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Preview: Win against SRH and we earn the ticket to the playoffs

There’s no going backward for Kolkata Knight Riders as they face Sunrisers Hyderabad in a must-win game at Rajiv Gandhi International stadium tonight (May 19) in Hyderabad. 

Kane Williamson’s SRH has already qualified for the playoffs thus the result will not make any difference to their overall standings in the points table. Same doesn’t apply for DK and his men, as they will look to win and seal the third spot at the points table. A loss will jeopardise our campaign and it will then be a huge waiting game for us.

News from the Knights camp
KKR’s journey in this IPL is like a seismograph. Every week we have won one game and lost the other. After two demoralising back-to-back defeats against MI, we managed to bounce back strongly and won against KXIP and RR in the following two. 

The team rely heavily on the opener Sunil Narine and Chris Lynn as their ability to score at a brisk rate can change the game in a matter of a few overs. Robin Uthappa too has been scoring runs at a better strike-rate but is yet to convert into a big one. Dinesh Karthik, who comes down to bat at number 5 or 6 has been the most elegant, but also played an aggressive brand of cricket for KKR throughout this IPL. 

In terms of our bowling attack, as much DK and the team would like to go with the winning combination, he might be tempted to make a change in form of bringing Piyush Chawla back in place of Shivam Mavi. Spin has been KKR’s strength, and the decision wouldn't surprise anyone. Kuldeep too made a great comeback in his match-winning effort (4/20) against RR at Eden Gardens.

Little Concerns for the Orange Army
Sunrisers Hyderabad are placed at the top of the points table. But has suffered two losses in a row against Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore in their last two matches. Their batting line-up was tested for the first time in a big chase against RCB the other night. They have hardly done anything wrong in this IPL. Their every moves pays off. Manish Pandey’s return in form will just give the extra boost to their already established batting line-up.

In the bowling department, young spinner Rashid Khan continues to impress and trouble the batsmen. Basil Thampi could be dropped after a poor show against RCB.

History
KKR does have an edge over the home team in their overall head to head record (W/L - 8:5) in IPL. Going by the most recent success, KKR will look to add another win to their two match winning streak. While SRH will look to break their two match losing streak. The two sides have played 4 IPL matches in Hyderabad and share 2 wins and 2 losses

Head to head
Overall: Matches -13
Won by Kolkata Knight Riders - 8
Won by Sunrisers Hyderabad - 5

Last 5 games
Won by KKR - 2
Won by SRH - 3

Last time we played SRH at Eden Gardens. A great bowling display led by Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Billy Stanlake held us to post a low 138 runs on board. Williamson-inspired SRH came close to our total, with Yusuf Pathan finishing the game with a six and 6 balls to spare.

Match Details
19 May, 2018, 20:00 (IST), Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad.