Upbeat KKR looks to avenge first-leg loss to MI

KKR looks settled with its batsmen and bowlers contributing equally in the team’s four wins so far. Uthappa and Gambhir have been batting well and Yadav took the centre stage in the last match.

Gautam Gambhir (right) has been KKR's batting mainstay and the team would want him to give it a good start again.   -  PTI

Suryakumar Yadav’s match-winning knock (60 off 49 balls) at number three against the Rising Pune Supergiants shows the depth of talent in Kolkata Knight Riders. Suryakumar, who usually bats in the lower order, came in after opener Robin Uthappa’s dismissal in Sunday’s match against RPS and anchored his team’s chase. It is also a reflection of the work done by the team management in helping players to deal with pressure situations.

The Mumbai middle-order batsman, who came in as Manish Pandey’s replacement, did enough against Rising Pune Supergiants to deserve another opportunity in the team’s next outing against Mumbai Indians on Thursday. The familiar environment at the Wankhede stadium, where he excelled as Mumbai’s anchor in first-class cricket, is likely to bring out the best in him.

Suryakumar’s orthodox batting in T20 underscores his adaptability. Gautam Gambhir, while appreciating the youngster’s willingness to curb his attacking approach for the team’s cause, feels the batsman is more valuable as a finisher.

Mumbai Indians will hope its skipper Rohit Sharma to lead the way with the bat. The home team’s batting and bowling has not been up to the mark.

KKR looks settled with its batsmen and bowlers contributing equally in the team’s four wins so far. Uthappa and Gambhir have been batting well and Yadav took the centre stage in the last match. West Indies’ Sunil Narine has been the pick of bowlers and leg-spinner Piyush Chawla is a big-match player.

All-rounders, Rajagopal Sathish, Andre Russell and Shakib Al Hasan, tilt the scales heavily in favour of KKR, fittingly for a team coached by the incredibly versatile Jacques Kallis. Yusuf Pathan can play the big shots any moment and it is only a matter of time before he clicks.

MI won the first battle between the two teams in this year’s IPL, clinching an impressive six-wicket win chasing a stiff target of 187.

TAYLOR REPLACES MALINGA

West Indies pace bowler Jerome Taylor has joined the MI squad replacing Lasith Malinga, who was ruled out of IPL with a knee injury. Jerome Taylor had prior stints with Kings XI Punjab and Pune Warriors.

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos