Rajasthan Royals (RR) will take on the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in match no. 54 of the Pepsi Indian Premier League (IPL) 2015 at their adopted home in Brabourne Stadium, Mumbai on Saturday.
This is literally a do-or-die situation for both the sides. Whoever wins will make it to the playoff stages of the IPL 2015. But a win will not guarantee either of them one of the top two spots in the standings.
The Royals will be in action after a five-day break. They suffered a loss to the Chennai Super Kings in their last game in Chennai and that hampered their chances of making it to the playoffs. RR had a brilliant start to the tournament but lost their winning momentum midway through the T20 extravaganza.
Meanwhile, KKR have also lost their last game against the Mumbai Indians (MI). But they have played good all-round cricket so far and are currently placed in the number two spot in the standings. They would want to make it to the playoffs for the second time in two years and would also want to knock Rajasthan Royals out of the race.
Let's have a look at some of the key players from both the sides:
Ajinkya Rahane - Rahane has been in flying form this IPL and has already amassed 461 runs in 11 innings at an astonishing average of 51.22. He set an example with his willow at the top of the order for the Royals. If RR would want to qualify for the playoffs, Rahane has to play a big knock on Saturday against the Knight Riders at the Brabourne Stadium.
Steven Smith - Although he has had a decent tournament with the bat, he would be a key player on Saturday for the Royals. He was leading the side until Shane Watson took over the captaincy. It was since the Royals started losing their winning momentum. Watson handed over the captaincy to Smith few days ago to focus on his all-round game.
Kolkata Knight Riders
Robin Uthappa - Uthappa will be a very crucial player for the Knight Riders as they will take on the desperate Royals. He has to play a big knock at the top of the order in order to power KKR to the Playoff stages of the IPL. So far he has managed to put up 350 runs in 12 matches at an average 31.81. He has been getting just the right kind of starts but he needs to convert them into a big one in this all-important fixture.
Andre Russell - Russell has been the hitman for KKR in this edition of the tournament. He has got wickets with the ball and runs with the bat. He has also won his side a number of matches with his all-round abilities. He will be a big player in their clash against the Royals. Russell has scored 289 runs in 10 innings with an incredible strike rate of 193.95. He has also bagged 11 wickets so far.