IPL 2018: Qualifier 2, SRH vs KKR- Kolkata Knight Riders Predicted XI

IPL 2018: Qualifier 2, SRH vs KKR- Kolkata Knight Riders Predicted XI

On current form, Kolkata are deemed to be the favourites.

Kolkata Knight Riders
Kolkata Knight Riders. (Photo by Kuntal Chakrabarty/IANS)

The Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) managed to brush aside the Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the Eliminator at the Eden Gardens. However, their job isn’t quite done yet as they will now be up against the Sunrisers Hyderabad for the Qualifier 2 at the same venue. Dinesh Karthik’s men stuttered early, but have managed four wins on the trot to find themselves a couple of matches away from the title.

The Men in Gold and Purple will be looking to pile on the agony for the Sunrisers, who have lost four contests in succession. The team combination was an issue earlier for the Knights and got them in place as their campaign has progressed. They didn’t change their playing eleven against the Royals. In our article, we take through their lineup for the next match against a stronger opposition.

Here is KKR Predicted XI for the game against SRH

Openers (Sunil Narine, Chris Lynn)

The pair of Sunil Narine and Chris Lynn has been one of the most explosive stands in this year’s IPL. The Knights are unlikely to make any changes in their opening combination. Lynn began the tournament slowly but gradually found his rhythm in the second leg of the round-robin phase. In the last match, he couldn’t deliver and the Queenslander will be keen to get his side off to a quick start.

Narine’s power-hitting prowess inside the field restrictions has made the opponents put on their thinking cap. He played a cameo in KKR’s last match versus SRH, but couldn’t replicate the same in the first qualifier and was dismissed by the guile of Krishnappa Gowtham. Nevertheless, Karthik’s troops will be pinning hopes on him to take advantage of the powerplay.

Middle-order (Robin Uthappa, Nitish Rana, Dinesh Karthik (capt & wk), Shubman Gill)

The middle-order is a formidable one. Dinesh Karthik has been the backbone of the batting and though he hasn’t got any big scores, the Knights’ captain has chipped in with useful hands. Shubman Gill has played a crucial knock against the Royals, which bailed the team out of a precarious position. The teenager’s services may again be required on the slow-paced wicket in Kolkata.

Robin Uthappa’s form has turned out a problem thus far and the franchise needs their seasoned campaigner to get his touchback. Nitish Rana was excellent in the first-half of the event. However, he has somewhat been indifferent after his return from the back injury he suffered in KKR’s match against RCB last month. Moreover, he will be looking to make amends for the poor shot he played against RR.

All-rounder (Andre Russell)

On several occasions, Andre Russell has come to the party and guided the Knight Riders to safety from risky positions. The Jamaican has wielded his willow to good effect and churned out the big shots in the hour of need for the team. He was erratic with the ball earlier, but has made a strong comeback and has picked up wickets regularly, much to the delight of Karthik’s men.

Bowlers (Javon Searles, Piyush Chawla, Kuldeep Yadav, Prasidh Krishna)      

The bowlers were under the pump in the last match at this very ground but nipped out some crucial wickets later to get a stranglehold on the batsmen. Kuldeep Yadav wasn’t at his very best in the chunk of the league stage, however, has ensured that he strikes form before the crunch encounters. Piyush Chawla has also been a wily customer with his fast leg-breaks.

Narine was played with comfort by the Royals and he leaked quite a few runs. Nevertheless, he can’t be written off on the basis of one bad day. Russell’s experience will also be vital to the Knights’ chances. Prasidh Krishna hasn’t disappointed ever since he made his debut against the Mumbai Indians (MI) and he will have his role to play as well along with Javon Searles, another fast bowler.

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