Two-time champions Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will lock horns with Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Eliminator of IPL 2016 at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in New Delhi on Wednesday. This will be a knockout game as we are all aware of and whoever wins will get a chance to play the losing team (either Royal Challengers Bangalore or Gujarat Lions) at the same venue in Qualifier 2 on Friday to take a shy at the final.
Sunrisers Hyderabad lost a bit of momentum towards the end of the league stage of IPL 2016 as they lost two consecutive games before this match and gave away the chance to reach the top two of the IPL 2016 points table.
Meanwhile, KKR defeated the Sunrisers in their last game to make it to the playoff stages of IPL 2016. That was a do-or-die game for them as they had no other alternative but to win that match.
Coming back to this eliminator, KKR will have the edge over the Sunrisers having beaten them twice in this tournament by eight wickets and 22 runs respectively. KKR will also bank on their bowling attack, which has been one of the reasons for their success and also on few of their batting masterminds â€“ skipper Gautam Gambhir, Yusuf Pathan and Robin Uthappa. These three have been their best batsmen throughout this current season of the IPL.
KKR will also hope that Andre Russell recovers ahead of the game as he has been instrumental in a number of games in IPL 2016.
The Sunrisers, on the other hand, will want their star bowler Mustafizur Rahman to fire with the ball. He was ineffective in both games against KKR despite being one of the best bowlers in IPL 2016. Rahman, who has 16 wickets from 14 matches and an incredible economy rate of 6.71, will want to step up to the big occasion as his side needs him.
David Warner and Shikhar Dhawan have been in superb form and they will want these two to continue with their momentum in the Eliminator against KKR as well. But their middle-order batsmen have not been tested much in this IPL. Warner will want his middle-order batsmen like Yuvraj Singh, Kane Williamson, Naman Ojha and Moises Henriques to fire with the bat as well.
SRH will be without Ashish Nehra as he has been ruled out of IPL 2016 because of an injury. Another left-arm seamer Barinder Sran will be taking his place in the playing XI. Sran will also want to justify his selection in the Indian ODI and T20 squad for the Zimbabwe tour as well.
IPL 2016 playoffs SRH vs KKR Eliminator schedule:
Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) vs Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR):
Date: Wednesday, May 25.
Time: 8 p.m. IST (3.30 p.m. BST, 10.30 a.m. ET).
Venue: Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in New Delhi.
TV listings: India: Sony Six, Sony Six HD, Sony ESPN, Sony ESPN HD, Sony Max. Middle East and North Africa: OSN Sports Cricket. USA: ESPN. Canada: Sportsnet. UK: Sky Sports. South Africa: SuperSport. International (Rest of the world): Cricketgateway (Online).