Kings XI Punjab are under a great deal of pressure, having lost their last four games and suffering defeat in five out of six games in IPL 2020. Kings XI Punjab quickly need to figure out their winning combination and need the intent to get past the top sides in IPL 2020. It would be far from easy for KL Rahul’s men.
They will face the on-song Kolkata Knight Riders, who are in a vastly better position as compared to Kings XI Punjab. Kolkata Knight Riders’ batting order might be shaky; however, their bowling line-up is a settled one and could defend any target, as displayed by them against Chennai Super Kings in Abu Dhabi. Hence, they would be keen to get some consistency under their belt.
We take a look at predicted eleven of Kings XI Punjab ahead of their IPL 2020 game against Kolkata Knight Riders:
KL Rahul (c):
With 313 runs in six games, KL Rahul might be the owner of Orange Cap; however, the skipper’s pacing of his innings remains questionable. Since the last two matches, KL Rahul has not been going hard at the opposition’s bowling attack and instead adopting a highly conservative approach.
He managed only 11 runs against SunRisers Hyderabad, consuming 16 deliveries. The right-handed batsman must lead from the front again and craft impactful knocks if Kings XI Punjab are to get back to winning ways.
Mayank Agarwal is also close to KL Rahul in the race for attaining the Orange Cap. He looked in good touch against SunRisers Hyderabad on Thursday before being run-out by some brilliant fielding effort from David Warner. Hence, Mayank Agarwal has some catching up to do as well after a few inconsistent innings.
Kings XI Punjab could do something different with Glenn Maxwell by promoting him to number three. Glenn Maxwell has so far yielded quite underwhelming returns, hardly justifying the price tag of INR 10 crores. The right-handed batsman has three fifties while batting at number three while striking at 192.17.
Nicholas Pooran was the only one who could hold his head high after KXIP’s game against SunRisers Hyderabad. In pursuit of 202, Nicholas Pooran kept his side single-handedly in the game by striking a flurry of sixes. Pooran’s 37-ball 77 comprised of seven sixes, including a 28-run over off Abdul Samad’s bowling.
Prabhsimran Singh (wk):
Prabhsimran Singh batted at number three against SunRisers Hyderabad, playing the first game of IPL 2020. The right-handed batsman struck two boundaries; however, he lost his wicket while trying to hit a third. Prabhsimran Singh also kept wickets and should retain his spot.
Mandeep Singh played the first match of IPL 2020 against Chennai Super Kings in Dubai, playing a promising knock of 27 off 16 deliveries. Kings XI Punjab needed him to deliver against SunRisers Hyderabad; however, he managed only a run-a-ball six before being undone by Rashid Khan. However, he should retain his spot.
Afghan mystery spinner Mujeeb-Ur-Rahman played his first match of IPL 2020 against SunRisers Hyderabad in Dubai. Mujeeb-Ur-Rahaman replaced Chris Jordan; however, could not be amongst the wickets as he conceded 39 runs in four overs. Nevertheless, the 19-year old should retain his spot.
Ravi Bishnoi was the pick of the bowlers against SunRisers Hyderabad, claiming three wickets for 29 runs in three overs as Kings XI Punjab marginally pulled things back. The young leg-spinner dismissed the likes of David Warner, Jonny Bairstow, and Abdul Samad at the right times.
Mohammed Shami is arguably the most consistent bowlers in the Kings XI Punjab camp; however, he has not found the necessary support from his colleagues. Shami claimed the wicket of Abhishek Sharma against SunRisers Hyderabad, conceding 40 runs in four overs. In six matches, the 29-year old has claimed nine wickets at 21.44.
Sheldon Cottrell has remained way below-par in the last few games as compared to the first few. David Warner and Jonny Bairstow found little troubles to pounce on Sheldon Cottrell’s lengths with the new ball. Cottrell leaked 33 runs in three overs that included five boundaries. Hence, Cottrell must get it right before Punjab either call up Chris Jordan or James Neesham.
Arshdeep Singh, who displayed a brilliant spell of bowling in his first match of IPL 2020, was the best amongst pace bowlers against the SunRisers. Arshdeep Singh claimed the wickets of Manish Pandey and Priyam Garg, leaking only 33 runs in four overs. The left-arm seamer had not conceded a boundary until his final over.