When the two teams square off in the IPL on Wednesday in Bengaluru, Kolkata Knight Riders will be anxious to restart their stalled campaign, while Royal Challengers Bangalore will want to improve their middle batting order instead of completely relying on its top three hitters.
The two-time champions have struggled in their last four games, losing both at home and away. With only two victories from seven games, the Nitish Rana-led team is currently in seventh place. KKR hitters are not being able to leave an impact with their batting also, they are without their regular captain Shreyas Iyer and starting all-rounder Shakib-Al-Hasan.
The KKR batsmen were supposed to rise to the occasion in the 49-run loss to Chennai Super Kings on Sunday, chasing a 230-plus score. However, under pressure, the top order, which included players like Venkatesh Iyer, Rana, and N Jagadeesan, gave way.
image source:KKR Will Take On RCB In The 36th Match Of IPL 2023
Additionally, KKR has struggled to decide on their opening pair. Former champions have tried around and used Jagadeesan, Sunil Narine, Litton Das, Jason Roy, and Rahmanullah Gurbaz as openers.
The West Indian veteran was out for a duck as they sent Narine to open the batting alongside Jagadeesan against CSK. If Roy and Rinku Singh had not continued to play into their fifties, the margin of defeat would have been larger. The two’s performance against CSK was the only positive aspect of the team’s poor performance.
Andre Russell, a powerful hitter, has also abjectly failed in his function as the finisher. The all-rounder’s physical condition is another issue. He frequently sustains injuries when bowling, thus he hasn’t even attempted to bowl his required four overs this season and is trying to recover for his next upcoming match.
After narrowly defeating the previous table-toppers Rajasthan Royals by seven runs, RCB will be motivated to keep winning. Faf du Plessis and his team are in fifth place, just outside the top four, after winning four of their last seven games, including the last two.
RCB’s wins have been backed by some outstanding performance by players like Du Plessis who has been in excellent form and has raised many centuries stands alongside the similarly sharp Virat Kohli and Glenn Maxwell.
But the catch is only these three are responsible for the majority of the scoring while the other batters are struggling. The middle order, which consists of Dinesh Karthik, Mahipal Lomror, Shahbaz Ahmed, and Suyash Prabhudessai, is expected to do well.