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The Kolkata Knight Riders and the Mumbai Indians, who clashed in the opening fixture of Pepsi IPL 2014 in Abu Dhabi, go head to head yet again in Match 40.
In the nine matches so far, both teams haven’t played to their potential and need to raise their game several notches if they are to progress to the Playoffs. KKR (four wins from nine matches) are slightly better placed than their opponents who have only six points from their three wins.
Wednesday, May 14, 2014, 8 pm IST
Barabati Stadium, Cuttack
The one common factor in KKR’s wins in their two most recent matches is the performance of the openers; Gautam Gambhir and Robin Uthappa set up a platform on both occasions and collectively contributed 225 runs. KKR need them to carry on in the same manner.
MI will be glad they’ve found an in-form opener in Lendl Simmons. The Trinidadian scored 68 and powered MI’s run-chase against Sunrisers Hyderabad. Apart from Simmons, MI will expect runs from Ambati Rayudu (who has scored half-centuries in his last two innings), skipper Rohit Sharma and Kieron Pollard. Notes from previous match
Kolkata Knight Riders v Kings XI Punjab: There haven’t been too many teams who have stood up and competed against Kings XI Punjab this season. Kolkata Knight Riders have done it twice in two matches. In their most recent match, the bowlers stuck to their task, kept plugging away at the opponent, and tightened the screws in the final overs – conceding only 33 runs in the final five overs. On the batting front, the openers once again set the platform; not only did Robin Uthappa and Gautam Gambhir score runs, they did so at a fair clip. Not once did they allow KXIP to get back into the match. The asking rate at the start of the innings was 7.50, but it dropped to 6.30 when the openers were separated at the end of the seventh over. Mumbai Indians v Sunrisers Hyderabad: Runs from opener Lendl Simmons and Ambati Rayudu, which set up the seven-wicket win, should not mask the areas where Mumbai Indians were lacking. The bowling lacked penetration, though the usual suspects – Lasith Malinga and Harbhajan Singh – lived up to their stellar reputation. The form of Pragyan Ojha, who bowled either too full or too short, and the fifth bowler’s quota of four overs must be a concern for coach John Wright. The combined eight overs bowled by Ojha, Kieron Pollard and Corey Anderson cost the Mumbai Indians 70 runs.
History indicates that the Mumbai Indians have a stranglehold over the Kolkata Knight Riders. The two teams have met on 13 occasions, and MI have prevailed in 10 of those matches.
However, in the most recent meeting between these two teams – in the season-opener – KKR triumphed when they defeated the defending champions by a whopping 41 runs.
The Kolkata Knight Riders have effected the most run-out dismissals so far this season – 6.
Only 47.09 percent of Kolkata Knight Riders’ runs this season have been scored through boundaries – that’s the lowest among all teams this season. What Next
Gautam Gambhir and his lads will head south to Andhra Pradesh to take on the Sunrisers Hyderabad in their backyard on May 18. Mumbai Indians, meanwhile, take a four-day break before taking the field against the Rajasthan Royals in Ahmedabad on May 19.
The two points up for grabs in Match 39 of Pepsi IPL 2014 are more valuable for Sunrisers Hyderabad than their opponents, Kings XI Punjab, who are comfortably placed in the top-half of the table.
SRH have four wins from nine matches and are part of the mid-table muddle that also features the Kolkata Knight Riders, Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore. With each team having just a handful of league fixtures remaining, each victory will take these teams one step closer to a berth in the Playoffs.
Kings XI Punjab are playing their best cricket this season. A new line-up of cricketers, guided by a new coach and an inspirational and ever-smiling captain, has meant the team has got almost all their elements in place and is executing their plans to perfection. Their campaign suffered a minor hiccup the last time they took the field after the Kolkata Knight Riders handed them a nine-wicket defeat in Cuttack. With five wins in five outings in the UAE leg of the competition, KXIP have a definite advantage over several other teams and their focus must now be on not only qualifying for the Playoffs, but finishing in the top two. When
Wednesday, May 14, 2014, 4 pm IST
Rajiv Gandhi Cricket Stadium, Hyderabad The Protagonists
Aaron Finch and David Warner, who scored half-centuries in SRH’s previous match, are the team’s top two run-getters this season. The SRH line-up doesn’t have too many other players who are capable of delivering the kind of impact that Finch and Warner and capable of, and hence the onus will be on the two Australians to score the bulk of the runs. On the bowling front, Bhuvneshwar Kumar has picked up wickets almost every time he has taken the field and he will be expected to be at it yet again. Dale Steyn has generally kept the runs down, but he has picked up wickets in only five of his nine outings this season. In these last few crucial encounters, SRH will need many more wickets from the experienced South African.
KXIP will be glad that Virender Sehwag, who was threatening with cameos, fired in their previous match. For most of his career, Sehwag has played his cricket one way – see the ball and hit it. Now in rhythm, he will be expected to not only entertain with cameos, but also pile up the big scores. The two M’s in the KXIP line-up – Glenn Maxwell and David Miller – have led their team’s charge, and they will hold the key yet again. Notes from Previous match
Sunrisers Hyderabad v Mumbai Indians: In their first home fixture of the season, the Sunrisers Hyderabad received a rude shock when they were defeated by the Mumbai Indians. The batsmen had done well to post 157 on the board, but the one area where they could improve is the number of dot-balls they played out; there were as many as 49 deliveries, which were not scored off. Even if the batsmen had scored one run off half those deliveries, MI would have had to chase around 180 rather than 157. On the field, SRH were guilty of not building pressure in the middle overs; they conceded 87 runs – 56 through boundaries – in the nine-over period.
Kings XI Punjab v Kolkata Knight Riders: Virender Sehwag had set up a great platform with a blistering innings of 72, and KXIP needed one player to play a cameo at the end. But post the opener’s dismissal in the 15th over with the score reading 112, KXIP only added a further 37 runs from 5.3 overs. When it was their turn to defend the runs, the bowlers gave away too many runs – especially through boundaries – early on; in the first six overs, KKR scored 55 runs, 42 of them through boundaries. That meant the scoreboard was ticking quickly and KKR never really felt the pressure of the run-chase.
Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kings XI Punjab have so far clashed on three occasions previously – twice in 2013 and once earlier this season. While SRH blanked KXIP on both occasions in 2013, KXIP got the better of SRH in Sharjah in the first week of Pepsi IPL 2014.
No team has scored more runs through boundaries this season than Kings XI Punjab. 60.61 percent of their 1597 runs this season have been scored through boundaries (152 fours and 60 sixes).
Sunrisers Hyderabad have hit the fewest boundaries this season. In their nine matches so far, their batsmen have only found the fence 129 times (93 fours and 36 sixes).
Sunrisers Hyderabad will remain at home after this fixture and host the Kolkata Knight Riders next on May 18. Kings XI Punjab, meanwhile, head to the national capital to take on the Delhi Daredevils on May 19.