The teams of Delhi Capitals (DC) and Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will face each other in Sharjah on Wednesday in Qualifier-2 of IPL-14. Delhi, which is in search of the first title, will have to face a tough challenge from Kolkata running in good form. This match will start at 7:30 pm Indian time. The winning team of this match will face Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the final on 15 October.
KKR are confident after defeating Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the Eliminator on Monday, while Delhi lost to Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in Qualifier 1. If the team led by Rishabh Pant suffers a defeat against KKR, then their campaign will end here.
If rhythm and showing off your top level game at the right time are the criterion, then KKR definitely has the upper hand. In the league stage, Delhi were on top with 20 points from 10 wins, but they know their road will not be easy against KKR.
IPL: KKR vs DC – Such is the record
There have been 27 matches between the two in IPL so far. Kolkata won 15, while Delhi got success in 12. Talking about the last 5 matches in both, Delhi has won 3, while Kolkata has won 2.
Delhi have registered five victories in the UAE leg of the tournament but the matches they have lost include a loss against KKR and the team will not get a better match than a playoff for revenge.
Delhi’s team has grown steadily since former Australia captain Ricky Ponting joined as the coach. The team finished third in 2019, while last year managed to make it to the finals. This time the team is going a step further and is trying to win the title.
Delhi’s team is one of the most balanced teams of the tournament. Apart from a strong batting line-up, he has an effective fast bowling attack, which gets a lot of support from the legendary spinner Ravichandran Ashwin.
DC: Hope for a good start from Prithvi-Dhawan
The top order of the team is very strong in the presence of Shikhar Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw and Shreyas Iyer. Pant and Shimron Hetmyer give strength to the middle order. Dhawan was the second most successful batsman in the last season with 618 runs, while in the current season also he has scored 551 runs. His opening partner Prithvi (461) also performed effectively against Chennai.
In the bowling, the pair of Kagiso Rabada (2020 Purple Cap winner) and his fellow South African fast bowler Enrique Norcia are performing brilliantly. But Rabada has not got a single wicket in the last four matches. Fast bowler Avesh Khan has also taken 23 wickets so far in the current season and he would like to increase his number of wickets against KKR.
Morgan’s team makes a great return to the UAE
But the road to Delhi will not be easy as Eoin Morgan’s team has made a spectacular comeback in the UAE leg after a poor performance in the first leg in India. The team was successful in making it to the playoffs by beating five-time champions Mumbai Indians due to better net run rate.
Kolkata’s team’s performance in the second leg in the UAE has improved significantly and Morgan’s team will not be easy to beat if the performance against Royal Challengers Bangalore is to be taken as a sign.
On a spin-friendly pitch, the spin duo of Varun Chakravarthy and Sunil Narine will test Delhi’s strong batting line-up. KKR’s batting has not been its strong side in the current season and Delhi team will try to take advantage of it.
The team will be hoping for a good start from Shubman Gill, Venkatesh Iyer and Rahul Tripathi (the team’s top scorer in the current season with 383 runs so far). If KKR have to make it to the final, then Morgan will also be expected to make a big innings.