Live Score: 30th IPL match – Kolkata Knight Riders v Chennai Super Kings, Thu, Apr 30, Kolkata
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After losing out to Chennai Super Kings (CSK) by a slender margin of two runs, defending champions Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) would want to turn the tables on them when the two sides clash again in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match at the Eden Gardens here on Thursday.
Struggling with just seven points from as many matches, the Knight Riders will desperately seek to win this tie, given the struggle in the mid-table.
They almost had CSK down and out in their last encounter in Chennai after restricting them to 134 for six in 20 overs but a resurgent Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led outfit pulled off a thrilling two-run win, courtesy a stupendous bowling and fielding effort which propelled them to the top of the table with six win from seven encounters so far.
But back on their home turf, the Knight Riders will be boosted by the vocal supporters who are sure to pack the Eden again backing the home team, a scenario where the hunter can become the hunted.
However, the fact is Super Kings have beaten KKR in 10 of the 15 matches between them so far.
CSK have fielded almost an unchanged team since the tournament started. They are a well-settled unit.
Kolkata, on the other hand, have experimented a lot with the playing 11. And with West Indian spinner Sunil Narine banned on Wednesday from bowling his off-spinning deliveries due to a suspected illegal bowling action, they will be forced again to make changes to the team.
It will be interesting to see if KKR skipper Gautam Gambhir opts to chase again, as their batting unit put up a dismal performance chasing 134 runs in the last game.
Robin Uthappa sparkled in his short cameo of 39 runs and the responsibility of scoring would again be on his shoulders along with the misfiring Manish Pandey and Gambhir upfront.
Yusuf Pathan needs to fire as well to have any chance of outdoing CSK. It remains to be seen if Gambhir continues with Australian pacer Pat Cummins or brings his strike bowler Morne Morkel in the side.
Chennai will rely on their opening pair to deliver again, Brendon McCullum and Dwayne Smith. The bowling looks strong too with Ravichandran Ashwin, Ashish Nehra and Dwayne Bravo all in great form with the leather.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Gautam Gambhir (captain), Sunil Narine, Robin Uthappa (wicketkeeper), Piyush Chawla, Yusuf Pathan, Umesh Yadav, Manish Pandey, Suryakumar Yadav Veer, Pratap Singh, Kuldeep Yadav, Sumit Narwal, Sheldon Jackson, Aditya Garhwal, KC Cariappa, Vaibhav Rawal, Manish Pandey ,Shakib Al Hasan, Morne Morkel, Pat Cummins, Ryan ten Doeschate, Andre Russell, Brad Hogg, Azhar Mahmood, Johan Botha.
Chennai Super Kings: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohit Sharma, Ashish Nehra, Baba Aparajith, Ishwar Pandey, Mithun Minhas, Pawan Negi, Ronit More, Rahul Sharma, Ankush Bains, Irfan Pathan, Pratyush Singh, Ekalavya Dwivedi, Dwayne Smith, Brendon McCullum, Dwayne Bravo, Faf du Plessis, Michael Hussey, Matt Henry, Samuel Badree, Kyle Abbott, Andrew Tye.