A playoff berth looks certain for Delhi Capitals, whereas, the Knight Riders needs to win all its remaining matches to ensure that it reaches the last four-stage of the Indian Premier League. So, when the two teams meet at Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Saturday, Eoin Morgan’s side will be hoping to get the house in order.
On paper, Knight Riders is a powerful side, but in this edition of the tournament, inconsistency has been a major concern. While the team has tinkered with its combination a bit too often, it hasn’t really yielded results. Last week, when Dinesh Karthik handed over the captaincy to Morgan, the KKR fans were hoping that this change in leadership could change the team’s fortunes. However, that hasn’t been the case.
In its previous match against Royal Challengers Bangalore, the Knights managed just 84 runs in 20 overs. And that defeat not only pushed it back further in the points table, but also crushed the confidence of the team. While the team management is confident that the experienced side will regroup quickly, they are also aware of the fact that a slip-up could hurt the team’s chances of making it to the play-offs.
The inclusion of pacer Lockie Ferguson has bolstered the bowling department, but the inconsistency of Morgan, Andre Russell, Shubman Gill and Karthik have cost the side dearly. So, against a superior Delhi Capitals, it’s indeed a do-or-die situation for the Knights.
Delhi Capitals, on the other hand, is leading the points table and looks like a settled unit. Even though it suffered a defeat against Kings XI in its previous outing, the camp is happy with the fact that its opener Shikhar Dhawan is in exceptional form – having slammed two consecutive tons.
The only concern, however, is the form of Prithvi Shaw. The youngster hasn’t had a memorable outing so far and his last four innings include two ducks.
For Delhi, pacer Anrich Nortze has played a key role, along with his South African compatriot Kagiso Rabada. However, Rabada had a niggle and missed the last match against Punjab, so it needs to be seen if he makes himself available against KKR – which will be heavily relying on its captain Morgan.
Things have not looked too bright for KKR so far, but in T20 cricket, one game can change all the equations.
Head-to-head: KKR 13-11 Delhi
IPL 2020: Match No. 42
Venue: Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
Time: 3.30 pm
KKR: Rahul Tripathi, Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Eoin Morgan (captain), Dinesh Karthik, Andre Russell/Tom Banton, Pat Cummins, Lockie Ferguson, Varun Chakravarthy, Prasidh Krishna, Kamlesh Nagarkoti.
Delhi Capitals: Shreyas Iyer (captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw/Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant, Shimron Hetmyer/Alex Carey, Marcus Stoinis, Kagiso Rabada/Daniel Sams, Anrich Nortje, Harshal Patel, Tushar Deshpande, Axar Patel.