A top-two spot will be the carrot dangling around the Eden Gardens as the Kolkata Knight Riders looks to make it three home wins out of three when they host the as-out-of-form-as-they-come Kings XI Punjab in IPL 2015 on Saturday.
KKR seem to thrive at home every season, backing their strengths to the hilt, and that has resulted in them picking up wins in the last two matches – against SRH and DD. Both matches have been won by batting first and then defending the total, with Gautam Gambhir, in the last game, doing something he never does after winning the toss – ask the opposition to bowl.
That should be the mantra for KKR all the time really, at least at the Eden Gardens, because it allows their spinners to take control on the slowing pitch. It has taken a while for Gambhir and KKR to realise it, but better late than never and all that, and they are certainly reaping the benefits.
"Rest of the matches are equally important, and we have a winning momentum going our way," Yusuf Pathan, who has silently been going about his business perfectly, told IPL's official website.
"We have won our previous couple of matches and have to keep that momentum going. If we can record wins in the games to follow we can try and reach the top two of the points table. Wins will keep us relaxed and allow us to play freely in the remainder of the tournament."
Relaxed is certainly not something that you can associate KXIP with at the moment. The table-toppers in the league stages and the finalists from last season have been the poorest team in IPL 2015 by some distance, with the manner of their loss against RCB showing just how bad they have been.
Dropping Chris Gayle a couple of times is a cardinal sin in T20 cricket, and the West Indian made them pay, with RCB smashing the KXIP bowlers to orbit and back. That would not have been as bad had KXIP at least put up a fight in the chase, but being bowled out for under 100 only showcased how disjointed their batting, the rage of last season, has been.
"We are badly in need of some momentum and I could attribute the losses to one reason, which is momentum," said KXIP coach Sanjay Bangar said. "We didn't really enjoy that at the start of the tournament and maybe that is one of the reasons why the performances have been inconsistent.
"It is very difficult to pinpoint reasons for the losses. You look at the preparation of the players and the confidence level and their mindsets. You try and monitor that and it has been pretty consistent. Ultimately the line between success and failure is very slim.
"There have been occasions wherein decision making under pressure has been found wanting. Probably that could be the reason for inconsistencies."
It will be difficult for Kings XI, with several superstars in tow, to motivate themselves for the final four games, with nothing to play for, but try and at least put up a fight they must.
"We will try and reach our own internal targets as far as execution is concerned in all three departments of the game," added Bangar. "We are also trying to keep the confidence levels up in the team
"It is about sticking to those things time and again, and we want that turnaround to happen. I must admit it is very difficult to regroup. But there is a lot to play for -- pride being one of the things that we have discussed."
Where to Watch Live
Get the Match Report and Video Highlights HERE
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KKR vs KXIP IPL 2015 Match 44 is scheduled for a 4 pm IST (11.30 am BST, 6.30 am ET) start with live coverage in India on Sony Kix, Sony Six, Sony Aath and Sony Max. The match can also be watched via live streaming online on Hotstar and Starsports online.
Viewers in the US can go to ESPN to watch the IPL 2015 game live, while the action can be live streamed on ESPN Cricket. Audience in the UK and Europe can go to Sky Sports to catch the match, while the online live stream option is on Sky Go and Watch Sky Sports. Viewers across the world can also log on to Cricketgateway.com to catch the match live online.