Kolkata Knight Riders are all set to wage a Wednesday war against Royal Challengers Bangalore in Match 39 of the Dream XI IPL 2020 in Abu Dhabi. RCB, placed 3rd in the points table, have a two-point advantage over KKR at this moment. Wednesday’s result, however, may change the equation if KKR manage to beat Virat Kohli’s men by a huge margin and better their net run rate, which currently stands at -0.607 as against RCB’s -0.096.
KKR registered a dramatic Super Over win against Sunrisers Hyderabad in their last outing and Lockie Ferguson’s stellar show certainly stole our hearts. However, our young speedster Shivam Mavi feels KKR will now need to ensure comfortable victories to strengthen their position in the race of playoffs. “We need to make sure we don’t drag the matches to such close finishes anymore. This is what we discussed after the match against SRH,” said Mavi.
Skipper Eoin Morgan, who will be playing his 300th T20 match today, along with Dinesh Karthik showed a great batting camaraderie against SRH to push KKR to a defendable total. The team, however, will want to be more consistent with the bat to ease off some pressure from the bowlers. So far, the bowling unit has been effectively winning us matches. Varun Chakravarthy and Kuldeep Yadav were extremely beneficial on the Abu Dhabi turf in the last encounter but, despite the sluggishness in the pitch, Ferguson showed us that even pacers could be effective if variations were executed to their perfection.
“Lockie’s addition has sorted out our middle over challenges. It’s not easy for any batsman to face 150+ KMPH speed on this wicket. So yeah, our bowling looks solid at this moment,” added Mavi.
For KKR, on Wednesday, the biggest challenge will be to contain Ab de Villiers. He was in an absolutely ravaging form against Rajasthan Royals in RCB’s last match, and so was he against KKR in the first leg meeting. De Villiers not only has the second-best strike rate (243.38) in the death overs this year, but also carries the second-best average (57) by a middle order batsman in IPL 2020.
“We will need to execute our plan against the RCB batsmen properly. We have played them once already. So, we need to look back at our faults and make sure we don’t repeat them,” Mavi reflected on the match that KKR had lost to RCB by 82 runs.
Good news is KKR have won 5 out of the 7 matches against RCB since 2017 and also registered 4 wins in the last 5 matches played in Abu Dhabi this year. So, will the count of wins go up by a notch on Wednesday? Tune in to the match tonight to find the answer.
KKR play RCB on October 21 at 7.30 PM IST an Abu Dhabi. For all the latest updates, do visit our social pages.