It was a difficult game against Mumbai on Saturday but Hayden dug in to take us to yet another exciting win. Lasith Malinga and Dwayne Bravo did exceptionally well to contain him initially. The wicket was playing slow and we were nervous chasing in the second half of our innings. But Hayden hung around, and with ample support from Dhoni, took us home. Another two or three wickets and we would have been in real trouble, so having wickets in hand allowed us to be more aggressive at the end.
Today, we play the Kolkata Knight Riders for the first time this season, the rain having played spoilsport earlier. Unfortunately, nothing seems to be going right for them. However, we can’t afford to be complacent against them, as they have nothing to lose at this point, and could come out firing on all cylinders
It won’t be the end of the world if we lose to them, because we have more or less cemented a place in the last four, but we want to finish the stage as top qualifiers.
Kolkata Knight Riders
Strengths: Kolkata have some good all-rounders, and their batsmen are doing well. Brendon McCullum, David Hussey and Brad Hodge are dangerous players and we will have to remove them early.
Weaknesses: Confidence, which must be very low at this stage. Their bowling too seems to be a weak link as they just can’t seem to defend their score.
Opportunities: We are in good enough form right now, despite some below-par performances in the last few matches, and we just have to repeat what we have been doing. We have to make sure we keep their score down and put pressure on them with a big score if we bat first.
Threats: Kolkata have nothing to lose now, and that can make them dangerous. On one hand is their lack of confidence, but on the other there is no fear. So that could make them come out hard against us, enough to cause an upset.