Sunrisers Hyderabad face a depleted Kolkata Knight Riders in match 35 of IPL 2020 in Abu Dhabi in the first of the two matches in Abu Dhabi, on Sunday, October 18. KKR beat SRH in their first meeting at this very venue almost three weeks back. Both teams are coming into this game with two back to back losses in their previous two matches. Both are in desperate need of points and wins to give themselves the best chance of making it to the final four.
Kolkata Knight Riders are coming into this game after losing two back to back games by big margins. Change in captaincy did not bring any luck for them against Mumbai Indians as they were completely outplayed. The team has not performed as a whole as the players have not backed each other in times of need. The losses have also affected their net-run-rate in a big way. It reads -0.684 after their losses in their previous two games.
Kolkata Knight Riders vs Sunrisers Hyderabad
They have almost got into the must-win territory. Pat Cummins and Andre Russell not performing consistently have hurt their campaign a big deal. With the ball, Russell has six wickets but has bowled at an economy rate of 9.12. In KKR’s previous tie against Mumbai Indians (MI), Russell only managed 12 off 9 while coming out to bat in the eighth over.
Also, KKR not getting consistent stars from their openers have been another reason why they have looked rusty so far in the competition. In short, Kolkata Knight Riders have to revamp their style of play in all three departments and have to play with a lot more intent if they are to make it to the last four.
Sunrisers Hyderabad, on the other hand, played their last game against Chennai Super Kings, five days ago. They lost the game by 20 runs failing to chase down 167. Against Rajasthan Royals, they failed to prevent 158. This games an example of both the spectrums of their game so far.
Like KKR, Sunrisers Hyderabad has also failed to capitalize on the key moments of the game. It will be interesting to see what strategy does Sunrisers Hyderabad take while playing against KKR, with both teams having their backs against the wall. An area, where both these teams have been the same is that both have not performed as a composite unit, which is why they have lost more than they have won.
Head to Head
In the 18 matches played between the two teams, Kolkata Knight Riders have won 11 matches, while Sunrisers seven. KKR beat SRH by seven wickets as they successfully chased down 142 when both teams met in the first leg.
Pitch & Weather Conditions
Pitches in Abu Dhabi has shown signs of slowing down in the second half of the contest. This being an afternoon game, the pitch is not expected to change much during the game. With no dew, captain willing the toss will look to bat first and post a decent total and defend later.
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With pitches showing more signs of turn and bounce, Kolkata Knight Riders might well look to replace Kuldeep Yadav with Prasidh Krishna. The medium-pacer has not looked at his best in the last two games for Kolkata. With Sunil Narine still not available for KKR, Kuldeep should be a good inclusion to the team.
Sunrisers Hyderabad, on the other hand, have continuous problems with their middle-order. Manish Pandey has been inconsistent with the openers having to do much of the scoring. They will keep their five bowling options intact.
Kolkata Knight Riders
Eoin Morgan (C), Shubman Gill, Sunil Narine, Nitish Rana, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Andre Russell, Pat Cummins, Shivam Mavi, Kuldeep Yadav, Varun Chakravarthy, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Rahul Tripathi, Siddhesh Lad, Chris Green, Prasidh Krishna, Lockie Ferguson, Rinku Singh, Ali Khan, Tom Banton, Manimaran Siddharth, Sandeep Warrier, Nikhil Naik
David Warner (c), Jonny Bairstow, Manish Pandey, Priyam Garg, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Mohammad Nabi, Abhishek Sharma, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, K Khaleel Ahmed, T Natarajan, Shreevats Goswami, Siddarth Kaul, Shahbaz Nadeem, Jason Holder, Bavanaka Sandeep, Billy Stanlake, Kane Williamson, Fabian Allen, Virat Singh, Basil Thampi, Sanjay Yadav, Abdul Samad, Vijay Shankar, Sandeep Sharma