Punjab and Kolkata face off in the first double-header fixture on Saturday in Indian T20 League 2020.
Match Timings: Oct 10, 3:30 PM
The bottom topper Punjab will take on Kolkata to find some hopes after a disappointing campaign in Indian T20 League. Too many experiments and the weakest bowling is making their playoffs-journey is too difficult. After losing 5 games out of 6, Rahul-led side is sitting at the bottom and to grab the playoff tickets, they need to win at least 6 games from the remaining 8. In the previous two outings, their bowlers couldn’t get the wicket in the powerplay. Bishnoi gave some hopes on Thursday and that was the only satisfying performance in death from Punjab. In the big chase, only Pooran showed some intent and they didn’t come close to the target. Maxwell would be dropped and Chris Gayle could get the game after recovering from illness.
Meanwhile, Kolkata are boosted up after a remarkable comeback against Chennai. Rahul Tripathi opened for Kolkata and scored 51-balls 81 but the middle-order failed to carry the momentum. Despite a Watson-Rayudu partnership, the Purple Army pulled off a sensational chase to clinch the game by 10 runs. They moved into the top four after this win but Kolkjata still needs to play like a champion. After a fabulous start in first 10 overs, Kolkata suffered in important final 10 overs. Karthik demoted himself at down-order but send Narine ahead of Morgan which was also a surprising call from the captain. McCullum is backing their current side but he can think about Kuldeep in Abu Dhabi because, in day-fixture, the spin will be crucial.
Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi is offering good spin in both innings but it’s still a good batting track. It would be a foolish call if captain bowl first on this surface. Being the day game, spinners will be in command and the team can go with extra spinners. Any score above 170-180 would be tricky on this track.
KL Rahul (c), Mayank Agarwal, Mandeep Singh, Nicholas Pooran, Glenn Maxwell/Chris Gayle, Simran Singh (wk), Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh, Mohammed Shami, Sheldon Cottrell/Chris Jordan
Shubman Gill, Rahul Tripathi, Nitish Rana, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Dinesh Karthik (c & wk), Eoin Morgan, Pat Cummins, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Shivam Mavi, Varun Chakravarthy
Season so far – M: 6, Runs: 313, Avg: 62.60
Previous outings: 33 (17), 44 (27), 77 (37)
Season so far – M: 5, Runs: 143, Avg: 47.6
M: 4, Wickets: 5, Eco: 7.94