Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will host Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the 33rd match of the ongoing edition of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2018.
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Dinesh Karthik led team has had a mixed season as they have won four matches out of the eight they have played. They are coming into the contest after bagging a win against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).
On the other hand, Chennai Super Kings (CSK) have continued their usual business of topping the IPL 2018 points table.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led team has already got their first foot in the playoffs stage after having won six matches out of the eight. It has been a dominating display of performance from the two-time champions.
However, they can have some issues with their bowling. In the six wins that Men in Yellow have tasted, their batsman has played a major role.
On most of the occasions, the Chennai batters have rescued them from troubled waters. Chennai unit carried their fine form and they would like to keep their impetus going.
Dhoni’s team has looked over-reliant on the bowling services of Dwayne Bravo. Thus the young bowlers like KM Asif and Shardul Thakur need to come up good in the impending fixtures. The spinners will also like to deliver the goods.
Chennai will look to keep their impetus going –
Meanwhile, Knight Riders will desperately like to get a win under their belt – to build on the momentum following their last match.
Robin Uthappa has had starts in all but every match but wasn’t able to make a substantial contribution.
Hence, the star batsman will like to deliver the goods against a quality side like CSK.
When these two teams had met earlier in the season, Andre Russel had played a blistering knock of 88 off just 36 balls. But Windies pugnacious all-rounder’s pyrotechnics had gone in vain as Chennai had won that match by five wickets.
Interestingly, Sam Billings was able to pull out Chennai’s ship out of the thunderstorm and guided his team to the shore like a professional helmsman.
Team Combinations –
Kolkata Knight Riders:
Kolkata will have to be at the top of their game against a quality team like CSK.
Nitish Rana is a doubtful starter for the game after suffering an injury in the last match.
The team management is expected to take a call on his participation ahead of the big clash.
Kolkata will have to be at the top of their game if they need to get the better of a quality side like CSK.
The Kolkata-based outfit is expected to play the same team with Rana being doubtful to feature in the playing XI. Ishank Jaggi might get an opportunity if Rana is declared unfit for the match.
Predicted XI: Sunil Narine, Chris Lynn, Robin Uthappa, Ishank Jaggi, Dinesh Karthik (c and wk), Andre Russell, Shubman Gill, Shivam Mavi, Tom Curran, Piyush Chawla, Kuldeep Yadav.
Chennai Super Kings:
Chennai is expected to make one change in their playing XI. KM Asif was expensive in his spell and he is expected to be replaced by Shardul Thakur.
Faf du Plessis opening the batting also doesn’t make any sense with Ambati Rayudu in prime form. But CSK think-tank is expected to go with the South African skipper once again.
Predicted XI: Faf du Plessis, Shane Watson, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni (c and wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Dwayne Bravo, Harbhajan Singh, Karn Sharma, Lungi Ngidi, Shardul Thakur.
Chennai Super Kings will definitely go into the contest as favourites given their current form. Like I said, the yellow brigade.
Meanwhile, Kolkata Knight Riders will like to take home advantage to get the better of Chennai.