Sunrisers Hyderabad vs Kolkata Knight Riders, five key player battles
Which one of Sunrisers Hyderabad or Kolkata Knight Riders comes out on top in Indian Premier League (IPL) 2018 qualifier 2 will come down to how key players from both sides perform against each other.cricket Updated: May 25, 2018 08:45 IST
Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kolkata Knight Riders face each other for the third time in Indian Premier League (IPL) 2018 when they go head to head in the qualifier 2 at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
Both teams have won a match each and the result of the third match could come down to how key men perform against their counterparts. Hindustan Times looks at five key clashes which could decide who faces Chennai Super Kings in the IPL final.
Shikhar Dhawan vs Andre Russell
If Dhawan goes bang, bang from the start, his team is justified in feeling that half the battle has been won. The explosive left-hander has notched up four half-centuries and his first ball dismissal against Chennai Super Kings could only mean he will be hungry for runs. More by default than design, Russell now spearheads the KKR pace bowling attack and his deceptions could be handy in reining in the SRH opener.
Kane Williamson v Sunil Narine
The New Zealander is the current owner of the Orange Cap with 685 runs and to say he is in good touch would be understating the obvious. So who better for KKR to bank on than their go-to man for wickets? That Sunil Narine didn’t do too well against Rajasthan Royals could also mean that SRH would try to go after him. Conversely, it could also get Narine to course-correct and get back to his venomous self.
Chris Lynn v Bhuvneshwar Kumar
The sultan of swing will test KKR’s opening batsmen. Whatever Sunil Narine gets at the top is a bonus but how Lynn plays is crucial to whether KKR can build their innings. Kumar can swing the white ball both ways and the way a he set up Shane Watson’s dismissal on Tuesday could make Lynn treat him very, very carefully.
Dinesh Karthik v Rashid Khan
The leg-spinner from Afghanistan has an economy rate of 6.91 and has taken 18 wickets so far. In conditions likely to help spinners, he will fancy testing KKR’s most successful batsman and their skipper who hasn’t really put a foot wrong so far.
Andre Russell v Yusuf Pathan
If they get going, no target is too high. Russell is on song with bat and ball and KKR know what Pathan is capable of. Together they have exploded for KKR against RR but that was in a lost cause, in 2015. Pathan often doesn’t get enough balls to settle in --- his highest this term has been 45 and his strike rate 126.19 --- but on a ground he called home for seven seasons he could be the game-changer. Like he was for KKR in 2014, against SRH with a 22-ball 72.