IPL 2020 Match 12 Preview: RR vs KKR - In form Rajasthan out to combat Kolkata's myriad bowling options
Rajasthan Royals were down and out at one point in their last fixture against Kings XI Punjab. However, the team turned around the game miraculously in the last couple of overs to register the highest-ever successful chase in IPL history.
Rajasthan bowlers pull back match against KXIP
As the match was being played in Sharjah, there was not a lot that Rajasthan bowlers could have done when Mayank Agarwal and KL Rahul were going hammer and tongs. Many were questioning Steve Smith's decision to field first and then open the bowling with Jaydev Unadkat and Ankit Rajpoot rather than going for the kill with Jofra Archer.
As expected, their bowlers proved to be expensive. The team looked set to chase around 250 at one point, but their bowlers pulled things back in the last four overs. Ankit Rajpoot was impressive, conceding 39 runs from his four overs while picking up one wicket. Tom Curran went at 11 RPO but bowled well at the death.
Smith, Samson and Tewatia star for RR
Rajasthan Royals suffered a jolt when their biggest hope Jos Buttler, returning to the playing XI after completing his quarantine, was dismissed in single digits.
It was then time for Steven Smith and Sanju Samson to repeat what they did in the opening fixture of the competition. Both went hell for leather and had a 81-run partnership in just 6.4 overs.
Following Smith's dismissal, after scoring a half-century at a strike rate of over 185, the team made a surprise move of sending in Rahul Tewatia at number 4. The spin bowling all-rounder struggled to get going and could make just 8 runs off his first 19 deliveries. Once he was successful in getting one over the line, he just turned around the match.
Highest-ever successful IPL run chase
Tewatia struck five sixes off the 18th over of the innings, bowled by Sheldon Cottrell. He brought up his 50 off just 30 balls.
With a couple of lusty blows from Jofra Archer, Rajasthan Royals went over the line with three balls to spare as they won by 4 wickets to register the highest-ever successful run chase in IPL history.
Kolkata's multiple bowling options
For all their from, Rajasthan will not find it easy against Kolkata Knight Riders, who showcased a brilliant display of bowling in their last match against Sunrisers Hyderabad. Kolkata skipper Dinesh Karthik used as many as seven bowling options with Shivam Mavi, Kuldeep Yadav, Kamlesh Nagarkoti and Andre Russell bowling two overs each.
With mystery spinner Varun Chakravarthy providing similar control to that of Sunil Narine, Kolkata will be a tough side for the Rajasthan batsmen to tackle.
Beware of Morgan and Gill
Shubman Gill and Eoin Morgan who starred in the last match for KKR will be their leading batters.
Here's the probable playing XI of both teams:
Rajasthan Royals (RR) - Steven Smith(c), Jos Buttler(wk), Sanju Samson, Robin Uthappa, Rahul Tewatia, Riyan Parag, Tom Curran, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat, Ankit Rajpoot
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) - Shubman Gill, Sunil Narine, Nitish Rana, Dinesh Karthik (c & wk), Eoin Morgan, Andre Russell, Pat Cummins, Shivam Mavi, Kuldeep Yadav, Varun Chakravarthy, Kamlesh Nagarkoti
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