IPL 2021: Kolkata Knight Riders predicted XI for the match against Mumbai Indians
Surely, Mumbai will present a tougher challenge for Kolkata.
Updated - Sep 22, 2021 4:26 pm
Kolkata Knight Riders started as second-favorites in their game against Royal Challengers Bangalore but ended up victorious. They demolished RCB by first bowling them out for 92 runs and then chasing it in 10 overs with nine wickets in hand. It was a complete win, to say the least, but the challenges ahead for Eoin Morgan and co. are going to be difficult.
Here is the predicted XI for their match against Mumbai Indians:
1. Openers (Venkatesh Iyer and Shubman Gill)
Venkatesh Iyer made a fantastic debut in the IPL for KKR. In the previous match, his knock of 41 runs from 27 balls was a breath of fresh air for the Kolkata fans. The left-handed batter from Madhya Pradesh had previously opened for his state team, but he looked class apart against a top bowling unit of Royal Challengers Bangalore.
He should be opening the innings once again with Shubman Gill, who seems to have found his touch. The Punjab batter was struggling to get a move on during the first leg, but his fluent stroke play was once again visible against RCB. He would be gutted that he didn’t get past fifty, but his 48 runs off 34 balls were quite authoritative.
2. Middle-order (Rahul Tripathi, Nitish Rana, Dinesh Karthik, and Eoin Morgan)
The middle order of KKR, which was a thing of concern during the first leg of the IPL 2021, didn’t have to come to the rescue as the openers did enough against RCB to make sure that two points were in their pockets. What is interesting though, it seems that Nitish Rana has been demoted after being backed as an opener during the first leg.
His entry to the middle order has raised a question about the potential batting order. Who comes after whom? This is a question for Morgan that can be something to ponder upon. What works to his advantage is the fact that all the players in the middle are flexible. Morgan would though want to hold himself and Karthik for the death overs attack.
3. All-rounders (Sunil Narine and Andre Russell)
For all that has been said about KKR’s bowling so far in this season, Morgan would be quite pleased with what his two overseas all-rounders provided. Andre Russell continued his good bowling form this year, by getting the key wickets against RCB. With 10 wickets in this season now, he has a strike rate of just 7.8!
Though his bowling numbers seem unreal, his economy was a bit of concern, which worked out well in the previous match as he gave only nine runs in three overs. Speaking of economy rates, Narine bowled another spell conceding less than 24 (20 to be precise) runs in four overs. Though he went wicketless, his ability to hold one end is incredible.
4. Bowlers (Prasidh Krishna, Varun Chakravarthy, Lockie Ferguson)
The thing about KKR’s bowling is when it comes good, it looks absolutely wonderful. Barring a couple of loose deliveries in his second over, Krishna’s effort was quite good and it seemed like he was in rhythm. He conceded just 24 from his four overs while picking the wicket of Virat Kohli. His pace bowling partner, Lockie Ferguson was rampant as well.
Ferguson proved why he has been rated so highly, by bowling a great spell of fast-bowling. He also conceded only 24 runs but picked up two wickets. And, Varun Chakravarthy is possibly the most important part of Morgan’s jigsaw puzzle and seems to be improving every day. His 3 for 13 was just another wonderful spell to solidify him as a tough bowler to face.