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KKR vs PBKS IPL 2021 Preview: 1st Oct - Resurgent Kolkata meet wobbly Punjab in Dubai

Punjab Kings
Punjab Kings

After three defeats on the trot, another loss will crush Punjab's hopes for a playoff spot.


Three in three for Punjab

Punjab have themselves to blame with three losses in the last four matches. The team was looking set at one point to sneak into the playoffs but will now have to win all their remaining three matches in order to stand a chance of qualification.

The KL Rahul led side is placed at the 6th spot with 4 victories from 11 matches. They will be up against the resurgent Kolkata Knight Riders who have been in sensational form in the second installment of IPL 2021. The team has now climbed to the top half with 5 wins from 11 matches.

KKR in with a real shout

Two victories from three matches is a realistic aim for Kolkata, particularly given the form of their bowling line up. The Punjab batters will find it tough to deal with the mystery of Varun Chakravarthy and Sunil Narine.

A body blow for Kolkata though is the injury to Andre Russell. However, Tim Southee who replaced him in the playing XI in the last match did a fine job. Sandeep Warrier who replaced Prasidh Krishna in the last match wasn't required to do a lot but did just enough to retain his spot.

Kolkata's top order has been salvaged by some explosive batting from Venkatesh Iyer and Rahul Tripathi and Captain Morgan will expect more runs from them. Morgan's form though is a point of concern but until KKR keep winning, no drastic changes are expected.

Chris Gayle due a big one

Punjab Kings had to bring in Mandeep Singh after Mayank Agarwal was unavailable due to a stiff back. If Agarwal has not recovered fully, Mandeep is likely to get another game.

PBKS will expect more runs from Chris Gayle who has not been able to fire in the season till now. To his credit, Aiden Markram who was brought in as a replacement for David Miller has held his own.

That said, Punjab's batting has not been able to live up to the expectations in the last couple of matches. But, they will take some heart from the form of Ravi Bishnoi and Nathan Ellis.

Predicted playing XIs

Punjab Kings
- KL Rahul (c & wk), Mayank Agarwal/Mandeep Singh, Chris Gayle, Aiden Markram, Nicholas Pooran, Deepak Hooda, Nathan Ellis, Harpreet Brar, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh, Ravi Bishnoi

Kolkata Knight Riders - Shubman Gill, Venkatesh Iyer, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Eoin Morgan (c), Dinesh Karthik (wk), Sunil Narine, Tim Southee, Lockie Ferguson, Varun Chakravarthy, Sandeep Warrier

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