20 Sep 2021: IPL 2021, KKR vs RCB: Pitch report, stats, and more
Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore are set to square off in the 31st game of the IPL 2021. The Knight Riders have struggled in the season so far, having won only two encounters. Meanwhile, the Royal Challengers have shown their dominance in this season as well. The two sides will lock horns at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
Details: Pitch report and conditions
In the previous IPL edition, the wicket here looked balanced for both batsmen and bowlers. Fast bowlers are able to fetch decent movement, while spinners operated well in the middle phase. However, the surface here gets two-paced sporadically, which makes life difficult for batters. In the upcoming game, the temperature will hover around 35 degrees Celsius, while there are minimal chances of rain.
Fact: Teams tend to chase with dew setting in
It is interesting to note that the dew sets in on this venue as the match progresses. This makes chasing the target easier. Notably, six of the last seven matches at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium have been won by the chasing team.
KKR: IPL 2020: Performance of KKR at Sheikh Zayed Stadium
Kolkata lost their first encounter at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium to Mumbai Indians. They then won three back-to-back encounters before losing to MI again. KKR won the Super Over tie against Sunrisers Hyderabad. Thereafter, they were handed an eight-wicket defeat by the RCB. KKR won their final match against Delhi Capitals in Abu Dhabi, which was a one-sided contest.
Fact: IPL 2020: Performance of RCB at Sheikh Zayed Stadium
The Virat Kohli-led RCB didn't fare well on this venue in Abu Dhabi last year. They won their opening two games against Rajasthan Royals and KKR respectively. The RCB then lost three consecutive matches. Notably, they suffered each of these defeats while defending the target.
Stats : A look at the stats
The Sheikh Zayed Stadium has hosted a total of 47 T20Is. Notably, the teams batting second have won 25 matches here. The highest team score here is 225/7, while the lowest is 87. Meanwhile, the highest successful run-chase on this venue is 166/6. As far as the IPL is concerned, Ben Stokes has the highest individual score here (107* vs MI, 2020).
Strategy : Wanindu Hasaranga could be the dark horse
The RCB will likely draft Sri Lanka's leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga in the Playing XI. Hasaranga could even start the proceedings if the Abu Dhabi wicket is on the slower side. It will be interesting to see if the RCB save him for Andre Russell. Similarly, KKR's Sunil Narine could pose a threat to RCB batters at the start.
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