Match 58 Preview: KKR must stop Gayle to defeat RCB

Royal Challengers Bangalore and Kolkata Knight Riders meet to decide the group topper. Considering the last match, RCB holds huge edge and at home in Bangalore they may be impossible to be defeated.

History
They have played each other 7 times in 4 which included the biggest IPL vivctory of any team by runs. 2009 belonged to RCB when they won both matches. 2010 saw them sharing a match each. Despite RCB reaching the knockout twice, KKR has a good record against them winning 3 and losing 3, despite having never reached the knockout stage. RCB won the first match of current edition played at Kolkata.

2011 Performances
The Knights lost the first match again Chennai Super Kings, which they should have won, while won the close match against Deccan Chargers at home. Playing back-to-back matches against Rajasthan Royals, they first won the away match chasing a record total, and then ridiculed the Royals batsmen in the Home game. But, against Kochi Tuskers their batsmen could not even chase a target of 132. Ex-Kinght Gayle-force marooned KKR with a century. But they won comfortably against DD.

RCB has seized the losing streak of 3 consecutive losses, after winnning the first game against Kochi Tuskers. In the second match they were thumped by Mumbai Indians. Then failed to chase high target against Deccan Chargers, and lost without fight against Chennai Super Kings. After the washed-out match against Rajasthan Royals, Gayle-force thwarted the strong Knight Riders. The top-order ensured another smooth victory against Pune Warriors. Gayle’s record century and all-round performance ensured another thumping win against Kings XI in the last match. Gayle’s record blast helped another easy victory against Kochi Tuskers. They are now on a 6 match winning streak with another thumping victory against Rajasthan Royals.

Player’s Performance
KKR Player’s performance index shows comparatively better batting performance as they have 5 batsmen scoring above 100 runs. KKR’s bowling unit has been more effective taking 65 wickets in 11 matches, barring the slaughter by Gayle.

RCB Player’s performance index indicate 50 wickets for bowlers in 11 matches, one of which was washed out. With Gayle’s two centuries, he is on the verge of snatching Orange Cap from Sehwag, who has already abandoned the tournament. 5 of their batsmen are in 100-club now with Kohli leading the chart and Gayle, AB de Villiers, Dilshan and Saurabh Tiwary following him.

Head-to-Head: 3 wins Each
2008

    KKR def RCB by 140 Runs
    KKR def RCB by 5 Runs

2009

    RCB def KKR by 5 Wickets
    RCB def KKR by 6 Wickets

2010

    KKR def RCB by 7 Wickets
    RCB def KKR by 7 Wickets

2010

    RCB def KKR by 9 Wickets

2008 Performance
RCB finished second from the bottom winning 4 matches and Lost 10. KKR failed to impress despite 6 Wins, 7 Losses and one no result.

2009 Performance
In 2009, RCB finished 2nd best registering 9 wins and 7 losses. KKR finished at the bottom with just 3 wins, 10 losses and one abandoned match.

2010 Performance
In 2010, RCB finished 3rd winning 8 and losing 8 games, while KKR had a better season with 7 Wins 7 Losses, still failed to break into knockout stage.

Overall Performance
Due to the poor performance in 2008, RCB has more losses than wins, winning 21 and losing 25. With 16 Wins, 24 Losses, 2 No Result KKR has the worst record among the IPL teams.

Who Will Win Today!!
Kolkata Knight Riders are the favorites, yet besides the complacent batting display of KKR batsmen against Kochi Tuskers, other worrying factor for Knight Riders will be the RCB batting line-up filled with wonderful performers. Although RCB batsmen have failed to fire together, except AB de Villiers and Kohli, if they fire KKR can be in danger of losing another game.

Key Battles
Zaheer Khan vs Kallis/Gambhir
The two batsmen have played some exceptional cricket, specially Kallis. BUt last two matches have seen Kallis getting out cheaply. Zaheer Khan is yet to regain his peak form of World Cup, and perform well in last few matches, still with 5 wickets he is the best bowler of RCB. The winner of this battle can give a strong foundation to their team.

Gayle/AB de Villiers/Kohli vs Lee/Shakib/Yusuf and co
Gayle is the player who single-handedly defeated KKR in last match. Can they get him now without much damage!! AB de Villiers may not face Lee, but Gauti would make sure to throw Lee on him. Otherwise AB will face Yusuf and Shakib, besides Abdullah, the most impressive KKR bowler. Kohli will look forward to socre again heavily at the cost of KKR bowlers. The winner of the battle will take the match away.

Kolkata Knight Riders Squad
Batsman: Gautam Gambhir (Captain), Brad Haddin (WK), Eoin Morgan, Manvinder Bisla, Shreevats Goswami, Laxmi Shukla, Manoj Tiwary,
Allrounder: Jacques Kallis, Ryan ten Doeschate, Shakib Al Hasan, Yusuf Pathan,
Bowlers: Brett Lee, James Pattinson, Pradeep Sangwan, Jaidev Unadkat, Shami Ahmed, Lakshmipathy Balaji, Rajat Bhatia, Sarabjit Ladda, Iqbal Abdulla

Royal Challengers Bangalore Squad
Batsman: AB de Villiers (WK), Luke Pomersbach, Rilee Rossouw, Saurabh Tiwary, Mayank Agarwal, Muralidharen Gautam, Mohammad Kaif, Virat Kohli, Asad Pathan, Cheteshwar Pujara
Allrounder: Daniel Vettori (Captain), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Jonathan Vandiar
Bowlers: Dirk Nannes, Charl Langeveldt, Johan van der Wath, Zaheer Khan, Sreenath Aravind, Arun Karthik, BN Bharath, Raju Bhatkal, Nuwan Pradeep, Abrar Kazi, Abhimanyu Mithun, Ryan Ninan

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