The eighth match of the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) will see Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) take on the Punjab Kings (PBKS). The match is slated to be played at the Wankhede Stadium from 7:30 PM.
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR)
After beginning their tournament on a high note with a win over CSK, the side responded with a bleak performance against RCB. The aggressive, carefree batting approach, which looks stellar once it takes off, did not work for the Shreyas Iyer-led team.
While Pat Cummins has arrived in India, he will not be available for the contest. KKR have not had much time to ponder upon their defeat as they step out to the field only 48 hours following the loss at the DY Patil stadium.
The ploy to play Tim Southee paid off as the Kiwi was able to extract more swing albeit less pace than Shivam Mavi. With Umesh Yadav being in stellar form, KKR have a solid new ball pair which will be crucial at the Wankhede, where good bowling in the powerplay has been rewarded.
The poor form of Venkatesh Iyer and Varun Chakravarthy is a slight concern for KKR, especially with the duo not having played much IPL cricket in India. Andre Russell’s bowling continues to be a headache as the all-rounder appeared to be unfit in the latter stages of the previous contest.
The 2014 IPL finalists’ batting order delivered as expected on paper with a cool 205 run chase against RCB. With the batting appearing near flawless and the tantalizing prospect of Jonny Bairstow joining their ranks soon, the focus shifts to bowling.
Barring Rahul Chahar, no bowler could put any sort of pressure on the dominant RCB outfit. In a major respite for the Punjab Kings, their marquee player Kagiso Rabada will be available for tonight’s clash. The Proteas pacer is fully expected to walk into the playing XI.
WAGING ODDS: KKR (2.15) VS PBKS (1.72)
PBKS are the favorites and are priced at 1.72, meaning if you bet ₹100 on them and if they win the match, you’ll be making ₹172.
KKR are the underdogs and priced at 2.15, meaning if you bet ₹100 on them and if they win the match, you’ll be making ₹215.
Punjab Kings’ batting against Kolkata Knight Riders’ bowling would be the clash to witness. The in-form new ball pair of Umesh Yadav and Tim Southee will need to be on top of their game to shake the duo of Mayank Agarwal and Shikhar Dhawan in the powerplay.
As always, it is the KKR spin twins who hold the trump card and the power-packed PBKS middle order will have to be patient while the duo bowl in tandem. The new-look PBKS are expected to win the match.
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