KKR and SRH trying to maintain their chances for the playoffs

Knight Riders vs SunRisers Hyderabad Match Preview

Two struggling teams that are currently in the bottom half of the points standings face off to save their IPL campaigns. To get 16 points—generally thought to be a safe number—Kolkata Knight Riders must win each game from this point forward. 

In the same situation as Sunrisers Hyderabad, they only have six points at this point, but they do have the advantage of having a game in hand and playing at home on Thursday.

Both teams’ difficulties with their opening combinations is another element they have in common. In contrast to Sunrisers, who have moved Harry Brook and Abhishek Sharma depending on the weather and match-ups, KKR has tried six partnerships so far, the most of any club.

However, Brook will always remember scoring 100 runs against KKR in their earlier season matchup at Eden Gardens. Sunrisers triumphed in a game with a lot of points. Given that Brook has made so little progress lately with the bat, it is even more remarkable. 

Abhishek performed admirably as the opener in the previous game against the Delhi Capitals, so he is expected to stay there, with Brook batting in the middle of the order.

The openers for KKR are hoping for a strong start. Due to a back ache, Jason Roy was unable to play against the Gujarat Titans; nonetheless, his return may be encouraging given he had struck two brisk half-centuries in the two games prior to his absence. 

The middle order has been led by Venkatesh Iyer, Rinku Singh, and Nitish Rana, while Andre Russell has only seldom displayed the destructive force for which he is renowned.

There is frequently an underlying sense of freedom when two sides compete who have very little to lose. And that might make this competition interesting.

Hamstring problems have affected players on both sides. For KKR, Umesh Yadav will keep on sitting out. Washington Sundar, who is traveling to Bengaluru’s National Cricket Academy to recover from a hamstring injury, has not been replaced by Sunrisers. Have no more injury worries, though.

Sunrisers might continue to replace T Natarajan with Abdul Samad in the batting innings, like they did in the last game.

Rahmanullah Gurbaz, who would probably replace N Jagadeesan in the wicketkeeping position, should partner with Roy to open the innings. When Harshit Rana or Vaibhav Arora bowl, Jagadeesan may be substituted in their place.

Having once shared a dressing room with him at KKR, Rahul Tripathi has now faced the second-most balls (48) in T20s without being removed by Sunil Narine. With a strike rate of 147.91 off those balls, Tripathi has scored 71 runs.

Russell and Bhuvneshwar Kumar haven’t faced off yet in a T20 match. He was hammered by Russell for 72 off 34 balls, leading to two dismissals. 

His strike rate of 211.76 is the second-best among those who have faced at least 25 balls from Bhuvneshwar, trailing only Rishabh Pant’s strike rate of 239.39.

Bhuvneshwar, though, has the advantage over Roy because he has three dismissals against Roy in 11 innings while only giving up 64 points on 70 balls. 

Due to Roy’s brutal 26-ball 61 in a 236-run chase against Chennai Super Kings, KKR may think about using him in the middle order in the future.

Russell has had better results since the IPL 2022 when he entered the game before the 13th over, hitting 348 runs in 11 innings at a strike rate of 171, with six scores of 30 or higher. 

In contrast, he made 129 runs in ten innings at 152 when he entered after the 13th over. Then, perhaps, there is a case for elevating him?

Over the past three days, Hyderabad has experienced brief showers. On Thursday, cloudy skies are anticipated. This suggests that the playing surface, which has been covered for the majority of the tournament, may contain some dampness that fast bowlers could take advantage of. 

As a result, spinners have had a little bit better results this season at this location than fast bowlers, who have had an economy of 7.70 and strike rate of 19.3, as opposed to 8.18 and 19.7, respectively, for fast bowlers.

Sunrisers Hyderabad (probable XII): 1 Mayank Agarwal, 2 Abhishek Sharma, 3 Rahul Tripathi, 4 Aiden Markram (capt), 5 Harry Brook, 6 Heinrich Klaasen (wk), 7 Abdul Samad, 8 Akeal Hosein, 9 Mayank Markande, 10 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 11 Umran Malik, 12 T Natarajan
Kolkata Knight Riders (probable XII): 1 Jason Roy, 2 Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), 3 N Jagadeesan/Mandeep Singh, 4 Venkatesh Iyer, 5 Nitish Rana, 6 Rinku Singh, 7 Andre Russell, 8 Shardul Thakur, 9 Sunil Narine, 10 Harshit Rana, 11 Varun Chakravarthy, 12 Vaibhav Arora