IPL 2021, RCB vs KKR: Here's the Eliminator preview
Royal Challengers Bangalore will face Kolkata Knight Riders in the Eliminator of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 season on Monday. RCB finished the league stage on a high, winning a last-ball thriller against DC. Meanwhile, KKR confirmed their place in the playoffs as the fourth-placed side. The winner will meet the losing side from Qualifier 1 in the Qualifier 2. Here's the preview.
The two sides have met on 28 occasions in the IPL. KKR have had the edge over RCB, winning 15 matches. Meanwhile, RCB have won the remaining 13 games. In the two meetings between the sides in the league stage this season, both sides shared the spoils. Notably, RCB had beaten KKR twice in the IPL 2020 season.
The match will be held at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium and is scheduled for a 7:30 PM IST start. One can watch the match live on the Star Sports Network and stream the same on the Hotstar app (paid subscription). The pitch in Sharjah has been on the slower side, helping the bowlers. Batters need to be patient here and play as per merit.
RCB will go into the Eliminator in a confident mood after sealing a dramatic win over DC. Glenn Maxwell has been RCB's strength and he can be KKR's nemesis. He has 498 runs this season. Harshal Patel and Yuzvendra Chahal will hope to be at their best with the ball and stop KKR. RCB will need to be at their best against KKR.
KKR won five of the seven games in UAE since IPL resumed last month. They are an in-form side and the bowling has been terrific. Lockie Ferguson and Shivam Mavi have peaked at the right time. The spinners have not only contained runs but also claimed wickets. With the bat, KKR's top-order holds the key. KKR will have to churn out another top performance.
RCB playing XI: Virat Kohli (c), Devdutt Padikkal, Srikar Bharat (wk), Daniel Christian, Glenn Maxwell, AB de Villiers, Shahbaz Ahmed, Harshal Patel, George Garton, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal KKR playing XI: Shubman Gill, Venkatesh Iyer, Rahul Tripathi, Nitish Rana, Eoin Morgan (captain), Dinesh Karthik (wicket-keeper), Shakib Al Hasan, Sunil Narine, Lockie Ferguson, Shivam Mavi, Varun Chakaravarthy
RCB skipper Virat Kohli has scored 735 runs against KKR at 36.75. He has one century and four fifties. In 17 matches against KKR, Yuzvendra Chahal has claimed 17 wickets at 28.88. In 27 matches against RCB, Dinesh Karthik has scored 421 runs. With the ball, Sunil Narine has claimed 16 wickets from 15 matches.
RCB finished third in the IPL league standings with 18 points from 14 matches. They had a NRR of -0.140. Meanwhile, KKR finished fourth with 14 points. They had a NRR of +0.587.