| On 4 months ago

KKR vs CSK IPL 2019 preview: Struggling KKR face mighty CSK challenge

By Chaitanya Laxman

KKR and CSK started IPL 2019 as strong contenders for lifting the trophy. Three weeks into the tournament both have gone in different ways. KKR are plagued with several problems despite a strong team while CSK continue to exert their dominance through smart team selection and effective play.

For CSK it will be another game to check the strength of their well oiled winning team but for KKR it is a tough challenge as their bowling department is lacking inspiration while their batting order has started to crumble.

Venue:

Eden Gardens should see a batsmen’s game once again. The pace and the bounce can be trusted and batsmen will go for their strokes making it a high scoring game. But the other night, Ishant Sharma proved that the bowlers can also have a say if they get their lengths right.

Form guide:

For CSK, Suresh Raina’s form will be a concern  but the franchise likes backing their players so expect Raina to have a longer rope. Rayudu is back in runs and this solves their middle-order issues.

Bowling department is doing well and has contributed to team’s success.

KKR’s troubles at the top of the batting order continue to haunt them while their famed spin trio is in tatters. The pace department hasn’t showcased confidence either.

Key numbers:

  • In head to head battles, CSK has an advantage over KKR. In 21 games played between the two sides, CSK has won 13 while KKR has won 8.

  • There can be a case of luck factor KKR as well. In the matches played between CSK in KKR in the month of April, KKR have won only two in 11 times while in the five matches played on Sunday against CSK, KKR has won only one.

Players in focus:

After slamming two fifties in his first two innings, Nitish Rana has scored just 49 runs in next four innings. However this is not something new for Rana. In the last two seasons as well, he flickered after a strong start. Can he change narrative this team?

Ravindra Jadeja has taken only seven wickets in seven games in the Indian Premier League season 12. But he has done that at an average of 18.85 and economy rate of 5.50, his best in any IPL season so far.

Can KKR find a way to neutralise Jadeja’s choke in the middle-overs.

Chaitanya Laxman

Smitten by cricket, green mountains, and written words, Chaitanya is engrossed with cricket stats and analysis. But cricket commentary is what he savors the most.