Nearly three weeks have passed since Rinku Singh’s breathtaking attack on the Gujarat Titans, which enabled Kolkata Knight Riders to defeat them at the Narendra Modi Stadium. And since then, the two teams’ campaigns have been quite different. The defending champions are comfortably positioned in the top half of the points table with 10 points after winning three games since their defeat by KKR.
The Knight Riders, on the other hand, dropped to the bottom of the points standings after four straight defeats before finding their footing with a victory over Royal Challengers Bangalore. With six points, they are still fourth from the bottom and will try to maintain their momentum in order to move up to the top four.
Since KKR and GT currently lead the IPL in terms of wrist spinner wickets, the match at Eden Gardens will feature a competition between the two teams’ spinners to see who can take the most wickets. Having said that, GT’s pacers have also done a fantastic job of eroding the wickets of the opponent.
Mohammed Shami and Mohit Sharma, a combo from India, have taken 16 wickets between them. Despite taking some wickets himself, Alzarri Joseph has been absent from recent matches due to Noor Ahmad’s recent success.
Hardik Pandya, who has scored 366 runs in 11 innings against KKR while averaging 61 and having a 173.46 strike rate, can also be the deciding factor. Additionally, he has 11 wickets against them, with averages of 14.45 and 6.91, respectively.
Tim Southee and Lockie Ferguson, KKR’s foreign pace combo, turned out to be exceedingly pricey in the opportunities they received, prompting the Knight Riders to search outside them for pace possibilities.
Only Andre Russell is giving KKR any comfort in the pace department as Umesh Yadav is finding it difficult to make an impact and Shardul Thakur is recovering from an injury.
However, with 22 wickets between them, Varun Chakaravarthy and Suyash Sharma have carried the majority of the workload for the bowling unit and were essential to some of their victories, including the one over RCB.
The addition of Jason Roy has given the Knight Riders’ batting lineup a boost. The English player is coming off a quick 50 against RCB. KKR, meanwhile, has so far employed six different opening combinations.
As KKR’s only half-century opening stand in the IPL 2023 thus far, Roy and N Jagadeesan’s 83-run partnership in the previous match will have finally shown the team management an ideal option at the top of the order.
Although players like Venkatesh Iyer, Nitish Rana, and Rinku have made contributions, KKR will look to Russell’s bat for some runs.
Shubman Gill leads the Titans’ batting order, but all of the batters have put forth strong efforts in what has thus far been a team effort. GT hopes that the 2023 trends at the Eden Gardens will be in their favour and provide them a lift as they have been slightly behind in terms of strike rates.
At the Eden Gardens, as many as four 200-plus totals have been scored in as few as six innings, with 222 serving as the typical first innings total. The team batting first has won each of the three games, but they were all evening games, so it is still unclear whether the circumstances will be different for the match in the day.