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SRH vs KKR IPL 2019 preview: Hyderabad fight Kolkata as fight for play-offs turns hot

By Chaitanya Laxman

As we approach the business end of IPL 2019, the fight for play-offs becomes complicated and tough. Two teams- SRH and KKR who were expected to be in the top half of the points table courtesy of their strong squads, unexpectedly see themselves struggling to get out of the bottom half puddle.

With four wins each, SRH and KKR are living on the edge in IPL and a slight mistake will be suicidal. Hence a lot is on stake as the two teams meet on Saturday at Hyderabad.

Venue:

Given SRH’s strength, their home ground is expected to offer help for the slow bowlers. The ball may not come on the bat nicely and hence stroke-makers will have to be cautious while throwing the kitchen sink.

Form guide:

A formidable win in the last match has brought back the confidence in Hyderabad’s bowlers but a few chinks still remain. Their openers though look unscratched as the duo of Warner and Bairstow are at the peak of their powers.

Their Achilles heel is their middle order which has shown no signs of improvement. Can they repair it before it costs them a place in the play-offs?

Kolkata’s spinners are the biggest reason for their horrendous show in Indian Premier League season 12 so far. Kuldeep looks shattered while Narine has been toothless.

The batting too has its own set of issues. Nitish Rana’s valiant effort the other night will soothe the management and Russell is a force becoming stronger every passing day. The problem is Uthappa’s form and Gill’s batting slot.

Key Numbers:

  • In head to head battles, KKR leads the numbers. Out of 16 matches played between the two teams, KKR has won 10 while SRH has won just 6.

  • David Warner is the leading run scorer in the games between SRH and KKR. He has amassed 466 runs and looks good for a few more as he is in sensational form.

Players in focus:

When Andre Russell walked to the crease against RCB, Kolkata needed more than 100 runs in eight overs,  more than 2.5 runs per ball. But such is Russell’s impact that he still brought KKR within two hits from a win.

Russell is in some freak zone in IPL 2019 striking at 220.46 and hitting a six every 4.38 balls. He has already smashed 50 runs from 3 overs against SRH earlier this year. Round two of this mouthwatering contest?

Don’t forget to check the RR vs MI Deram11 prediction

Talking about that KKR vs SRH contest, it was Bhuvneshwar Kumar who got bulldozed that night against the rampant Russell assault. But he has done well to make a comeback. He has five wickets in eight games and although his economy is 8.29, he is still a match-winner.

And not to forget that he has 17 wickets against KKR, the most between two teams.

Chaitanya Laxman