Kolkata Knight Riders will take on Rajasthan Royals in the first match of the double header at the Eden Gardens on Sunday. Both teams lost their last matches. Kolkata Knight Riders went down to Sunrisers Hyderabad in a rain-curtailed match while Rajasthan Royals were defeated by Royal Challengers Bangalore rather easily in their last match. In fact, after five consecutive wins, Rajasthan have now lost two out of two. They will thus be keen to return to winning ways.
Match Name: KKR vs RR 25th T20, at Kolkata, 26 Apr 2015
Time: 10:30 GMT | 4 PM IST
Match abandoned without a ball bowled
Both teams get a point each which means Rajasthan Royals go back on top of the table. So that's all we have from the first match of the day, you can switch to Feroz Shah Kotla now, for Delhi Daredevils v RCB. Enjoy that one, no rain there.
Kolkata have been dealt with a big blow as their key spinner Sunil Narine has been ruled out of the game as he has been called for a suspect action. Even though he hasn't been at his deadly best since returning to the team following his remodelled action, his absence would be a definite psychological blow. With Narine you know that he can turn a game around on any given day.
With Narine out, there would be additional pressure on the other bowlers. Thankfully, they have bowlers who have gone a good job for the team. Umesh Yadav has been superb at the top, and he has been excellently supported by Morne Morkel. The duo has impressed for the team, constantly picking up wickets and keeping the run rate down. Their batsmen have been in good form. Skipper Gautam Gambhir, in particular, has been consistent, getting runs at will. Kolkata will want him to continue the good run. Suryakumar Yadav and Yusuf Pathan are the others who have gotten runs for them. Some runs from Robin Uthappa will help their cause.
Having lost their last two games, Rajasthan would be keen to return to their winning ways. Their success formula has been pretty simple. Runs from Ajinkya Rahane, Shane Watson at the top with support from the rest. Sanju Samson hasn't quite fired, but Steve Smith and Deepak Hooda make for a formidable batting line up. If their batting fires, they mostly end up in a comfortable position.
Rajasthan's bowling is also potent. Pravin Tambe like spinners of most sides has been the best performer of the team. Chris Morris has also done well for the Royals, but James Faulkner hasn't been as consistent with the ball as he was expected to be. He will need to show improvements for the team's sake. As for skipper Shane Watson, he has chipped in well with the ball too. Teamwork has been the key to Rajasthan's success over the years, and they must get back to basics again.
--By A Cricket Analyst