Kolkata Knight Riders is one of the three teams to have won more than one IPL trophy. The franchise has won the IPL twice, each in 2012 and 2014. In 2021, they will be looking for their third IPL title but their journey isn’t going to be an easy one. KKR was placed 7th in the points table with 4 points in 7 matches after the end of first phase. They have an uphill task of qualifying for the next stage but they have started their campaign in the second phase on a bright note. This will boost their confidence for the rest of the season.
|Player Name||Matches||Runs||Batting Avg.||Strike Rate||Highest Score|
IPL 2021 first phase wasn’t a great one for KKR’s batting line-up. The openers struggled to make use of powerplay restrictions meaning the middle order was always under pressure to score at a good rate. The experienced middle order had a tough time out there. Rahul Tripathi was one KKR batsman who looked in great touch and scored runs consistently.
In the second phase though, things are looking lot better for KKR. They have found an able batting partner in Venkatesh Iyer for Shubman Gill and both have shown good signs so far.
|Player Name||Matches||Wickets||Bowling Avg.||Econ. Rate||Best Figures|
|Shakib Al Hasan||3||2||40.50||8.10||1/23|
Kolkata Knight Riders bowlers too, didn’t have a good time in the first phase. Prasidh Krishna and Pat Cummins picked up wickets with the new ball were proved to be expensive. Varun Chakravarthy continued his superb form from the last season and his variations proved to be a challenge for batsmen. Andre Russell’s 5-wicket haul was one of the highlights against MI.
In the second phase, KKR bowlers have bowled well collectively as a unit. Lockie Ferguson has added new dimension to the bowling line-up with his extra pace and skills at the death. Chakravarthy and Narine have been among Kolkata Knight Riders best bowlers.
Knight Riders have a strong middle order with some experienced international cricketers in the mix. The trio of Morgan, Karthik and Russell can demolish any bowling line-up on their day which makes this middle order a formidable one. But their form wasn’t great in the first phase. Skipper Morgan will look to lead from the front while Russell will be expected to be at his devastating best in the second phase. Narine can be used as a floater for the need of quick runs.
Eoin Morgan (C), Andre Russell, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Kuldeep Yadav, Lockie Ferguson, Nitish Rana, Prasidh Krishna, Rinku Singh, Sandeep Warrier, Shivam Mavi, Shubman Gill, Sunil Narine, Tim Southee, Rahul Tripathi, Varun Chakravarthy, Tim Seifert (wk), Shakib Al Hasan, Harbhajan Singh, Ben Cutting, Karun Nair, Pawan Negi, Sheldon Jackson (wk), Venkatesh Iyer, Vaibhav Arora, Gurkeerat Singh Mann.
KKR team 2021 Playing 11 (likely)
Shubman Gill could be the next captain for Kolkata Knight Riders. Gill is young and has all the potential to be the next great thing in Indian cricket. Though he is yet to establish himself as a T20 player, he has the ability to win matches. Currently, Eoin Morgan is KKR’s captain and Dinesh Karthik is vice-captain. But given the age and talent of Shubman Gill, the management will be keeping a close eye on Gill and his growth. He has started the Phase 2 of IPL 2021 in a bright fashion and will be expected to continue his good form.
KKR looked down and out in the first phase when they lost 5 games and won just 2. But they have looked a changed unit in the second phase. They have adopted a flexible approach in the batting department by giving youngster Venkatesh Iyer to open. Kolkata Knight Riders bowlers 2021 performance will be important in the second phase as bowling has been KKR’s strength over the years. KKR has 4 wins in 9 matches currently and if they can win 4 more games, they can qualify for the playoffs. The momentum is with them and certainly they have a great chance to qualify.
Kolkata Knight Riders will play their next match against Chennai Super Kings on 26 September, Sunday in a day game. KKR have the momentum with them but CSK will pose a difficult challenge to them. Both the teams have been in good form in this phase. Thus, it is expected to be a close contest. Both the teams have already faced each other in the first leg this year in which CSK defeated KKR by 18 runs in a high scoring contest.