IPL 2018 | Match 54 | SRH vs KKR: Two-time IPL league champions, Kolkata Knight Riders, will be facing the table-toppers Sunrisers Hyderabad tonight at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium.

With a low net run rate of -0.091, KKR will look to win by a high margin to secure their place. A loss will place them as a direct threat to Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore that have been coming up too. KKR just had two back-to-back victories against Kings XI Punjab and Rajasthan Royals so they have the confidence and momentum down and with 14 points, they have the head-start as well.

The purple team has been riding on the backs of Sunil Narine and captain Dinesh Karthik batting power. They will look to Chris Lynn to repeat his performance against the Kane Williamson-led side the last time they clashed. Andre Russell placed lower in the line-up will manage the death overs. Robin Uthappa has had steady consistent performances and will look to continue his form. Shubman Gill and Nitish Rana will be expected to perform at the crease as well. The bowling trio of Narine, Piyush Chawla, and Kuldeep Yadav will attempt to thrash the SRH batting side.

On the other hand, Sunrisers Hyderabad is coming back after two consecutive thrashings by Chennai Super Kings and the Royal Challengers Bangalore. Their bowling attack which has been arguably the best this season is now being questioned as they failed to defend themselves in both matches. Both losses, however, has had no effect on their position as they continue to lead. This type of exposure to different pitches and quality batting line-ups may prepare them for the matches to come.

Tonight, they will be back to their home base with Rashid Khan leading the bowling front as always and Kane Williamson and Shikhar Dhawan, the batting side. Kane Williamson has now scored three consecutive half-centuries and is only 27 runs behind current orange cap holder, KL Rahul, at 625 runs. Manish Pandey has also shown signs of making a comeback. Basil Thampi must be prevented from repeating the blunder of conceding 70 runs in his over again. Siddharth Kaul and Bhuvneshwar Kumar will partner with Rashid to take care of that side.

The weather forecasts no rain tonight but the pitch is expected to play on the slower side, giving more opportunities to the spinners and cutters.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar is expected to make a comeback to SRH after he sat out in his previous match against RCB. Basil Thampi may be removed after his terrifying performance in their last match.

In case of KKR, spinner Piyush Chawla will most probably be brought back to the line-up to allow him to have his fun on the pitch.

The two teams have clashed thirteen times with KKR holding the upper hand of eight wins. At the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, the teams have played four times and have had a fifty-fifty success rate.

With a must-win tournament for KKR and a match to break the losing streak for SRH, this will be a cracker of a game to watch.


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