The undefeated Kolkata Knight Riders travel to Delhi where they’re aiming to make it three-consecutive wins to start their 2019 campaign. After making a fast start to IPL 12, the Capitals failed to bring down the Super Kings and now face arguably the hottest team in the competition at this point in time. Can Delhi make use of their home ground advantage? Only time will tell.
This promises to be an exciting contest, it’s the youthful talent of Delhi up against an experienced & jam-packed Kolkata outfit under lights at the Feroz Shah Kotla Ground. The Capitals opening match of the 2019 IPL saw Rishabh Pant dominate proceedings with a quick-fire 78 not out against Mumbai, he’ll be a genuine match-winner this season if he keeps producing knocks like that. It’s not only Pant Kolkata have to watch out for, the form Shikhar Dhawan currently finds himself in is superb. Scores of 43 & 51 in his two digs at the crease is a huge upside for Delhi, especially given Prithvi Shaw is still find his way at the top of the order as well. The Capitals just about match the Knight Riders in terms of batting strength, the amount of power hitters both sides possess is ridiculous. South Africa’s Colin Ingram is another handy addition in this Capitals middle order, now it’s just a matter of getting the top order firing and they’ll be set for a highly successful campaign. Skipper Shreyas Iyer has only managed 34 runs in his two innings, hopefully the captaincy hasn’t clouded his mindset given his tremendous batting ability.
Electing to play just three overseas specialists in their last match, the Capitals might think about introducing a fourth against KKR. Windies all-rounder Keemo Paul has struggled with the bat and whilst been economical with the ball, hasn’t really threatened in the wickets department. 36-year-old leg-spinner Amit Mishra finally got his opportunity with the ball, and he delivered with figures of 2/35 on home soil. Veteran fast bowler Ishant Sharma and young gun Kagiso Rabada look to be Delhi’s backbone in the bowling department this season, others may be rotated around them like Trent Boult, Sandeep Lamichhane and Chris Morris. At some point in the tournament you’d expect Colin Munro to make an appearance, it’s just a question of when.
Kolkata Knight Riders
It’s all about Andre Russell at the moment, he’s like a walking human highlight reel! If you’ve missed ‘Dre Russ’s’ first two outings of IPL 12, let me refresh you. The West Indian’s 49 off just 19 balls against Hyderabad sealed the win for KKR in a miraculous run chase, and if that wasn’t enough to tingle your excitement he dished up another explosive spectacle hammering 48 off 17 deliveries against the Kings XI. Russell is in blistering form at the moment and will be extremely difficult to contain until this sort of hot streak dies off. Nitish Rana probably isn’t getting the credit he deserves due to his teammates insane striking, he’s been outstanding for Kolkata in their first two matches with back-to-back half centuries. Robin Uthappa’s unbeaten 67 furthermore bolstered the strength of KKR’s batting line-up, the only concern at the moment would be Chris Lynn who is yet to get going at the top of the order. As far as quick scoring goes, Andre Russell’s whopping strike rate of 269.44 is through the clouds. Imagine his numbers on stick cricket!
It doesn’t end there for the West Indian all-rounder, Russell is also Kolkata’s leading wicket-taker in IPL 12 with four already to his name. Talk about the ultimate all-rounder, his price is going up every time he walks onto the field! While he may have conceded a few runs, Lockie Ferguson is a speed machine and just needs a breakout performance to get going. A staggering statistic is that the Knight Riders spin twins are yet to take a single wicket between them in this year’s IPL, it’s been a tough opening two matches for Sunil Narine and Kuldeep Yadav who find themselves in unfamiliar waters. Not dissimilar to Lynn and Ferguson, they just need one decent outing to break the shackles and they’re away.
Top 4 fantasy picks – Delhi Capitals
- Rishabh Pant
- Shikhar Dhawan
- Kagiso Rabada
- Shreyas Iyer
Wildcard pick – Ishant Sharma
Top 4 fantasy picks – Kolkata Knight Riders
- Andre Russell
- Nitish Rana
- Robin Uthappa
- Sunil Narine
Wildcard pick – Dinesh Karthik
Delhi Capitals (possible) – 1. Prithvi Shaw/Colin Munro 2. Shikhar Dhawan 3. Shreyas Iyer © 4. Colin Ingram 5. Rishabh Pant (wk) 6. Rahul Tewatia 7. Keemo Paul/Chris Morris 8. Axar Patel 9. Kagiso Rabada 10. Amit Mishra 11. Ishant Sharma.
Kolkata Knight Riders (possible) – 1. Chris Lynn 2. Sunil Narine 3. Robin Uthappa 4. Nitish Rana 5. Dinesh Karthik (c & wk) 6. Andre Russell 7. Shubman Gill 8. Piyush Chawla 9. Kuldeep Yadav 10. Prasidh Krishna/Prithvi Raj 11. Lockie Ferguson/Harry Gurney.
Zak Varik is an Australian columnist/writer who specializes in the sports category cricket. With over four years of experience covering all sorts of cricket tournaments around the world, Zak has gained extensive knowledge in International cricket as well as domestic.
“I’ve loved watching cricket since I was about 7 years old, my childhood hero was none other than Andrew “Roy” Symonds who probably enhanced my love of the game through the years”.
Zak is now an established writer for FCN (Fantasy Cricket News) and has also previously represented other Blogs during his time as a writer.