Indian Premier League

Kolkata Knight Riders v Rajasthan Royals: Rajasthan batters to go big at Eden Gardens

KKR all-rounder Sunil Narine
Sunil Narine is in cracking form with both ball and bat

Covering for Ed Hawkins, Paul Krishnamurty previews Tuesday's top of the table clash from Eden Gardens, where he predicts another run-fest...

  • Top-two face off at Eden Gardens

  • Eden Gardens ideal for a run-fest

  • Spinners thrived here on Sunday

  • Back economical Chahal and Narine


Kolkata Knight Riders v Rajasthan Royals
Tuesday 15 April, 15:00
TV: Live on Sky Sports

Kolkata Knight Riders v Rajasthan Royals team news

KKR's controversial batting order - Sunil Narine hadn't fired as an opener in years previously - has paid dividends thus far, producing runs galore and enabling enviable depth to the middle order. They will be reluctant to make changes, although Nitish Rana will come into contention if fit and Rahmanullah Gurbaz will surely get a game or two somewhere. Ramandeep Singh could be the one to lose out.

Probable XI: Salt, Narine, Raghuvanshi, Shreyas Iyer, Rana, Venkatesh Iyer, Russell, Singh (sub), Starc, Arora, Charavarthy, Rana (sub)

Royals' latest win came without two of their most senior players, Jos Buttler and Ravi Ashwin. Both are sure to return if fit. Given the assistance on offer at Eden Gardens on Sunday, expect Keshav Maharaj to provide a third spin bowling opting.

Probable XI: Jaiswal (sub), Buttler, Sansom, Parag, Hetmyer, Jurel, Ashwin, Maharaj, Boult, Sen, Khan, Chahal (sub)

Kolkata Knight Riders v Rajasthan Royals

pitch report

161 was palpably nowhere near enough batting first for LSG on Sunday at Eden Gardens, and was duly chased with ease. The opening match here produced a 208/204. 78% of first innings over the past five years were 170+ and 35% hit the 200 target. There is no discernable toss bias throughout that period but as this is an afternoon match, dew could well be a factor, offering a big advantage to the chaser.

Back both teams to score 200 @ 4/15.00

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Kolkata Knight Riders v Rajasthan Royals match odds

Having won both home matches and produced the better performance of the two, Kolkata are predictably slight favourites to win at 1.910/11. Whereas they demolished LSG, Rajasthan scraped over the line despite an easy target against Punjab.

Is this an over-reaction? Rajasthan were rated far superior at the start of the tournament and were missing key players on Saturday. This KKR side is not too different from the one that has consistently failed in recent IPLs and one can't help but wonder if they will soon revert to type.

This match offers the perfect opportunity to measure the importance of batting versus bowling. KKR have been superior in the first regard. Rajasthan the latter. My long-held view is that economical bowling is slightly preferable and, in fairness to Royals, I don't doubt their batting prowess. Their odds of 2.111/10 are preferred.

Kolkata Knight Riders v Rajasthan Royals Exchange strategy

Eden Gardens is a relatively small ground and, given the right conditions, conducive to very high runs. We've just seen Sunrisers break their own world record and I think this could be another to back the extreme overs.

KKR, with Russell and Rinku Singh on hand to be promoted if needed, have very deep and explosive batting. While Rajasthan haven't really demonstrated yet, so do they. Somewhere, Yashasvi Jaiswal and/or Buttler will go berserk from the outset and lay the ground for a big score over 200. This could well be the place.

Both to score 200 landed in the first match here and 4/1 on the Sportsbook is fair value about a repeat.

Back Rajasthan to score 200+ @ around 3.02/1

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Back Rajasthan to score 220+ @ around 8.07/1

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Kolkata Knight Riders v Rajasthan Royals player bets

Yuzvendra Chahal is well ahead in his team's wicket taking list and, on a ground where spinners enjoyed plenty of success in the previous game, the leggie looks solid value at 4.03/1 in the Top Rajasthan Wicket Taker market. Remember, ties in this market are now awarded to the bowler with the best economy. Chahal is generally very economical and is preferred to those bowling at the start and end of the innings.

Back Yuzvendra Chahal for Top Rajasthan Bowler @ 3/14.00

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Using exactly the same logic, Sunil Narine gets the nod at 4.3100/30 for Kolkata. He is going at 6.75, with nobody else in the expected line-up coming in below 8 and the favourite, Mitchell Starc, going at an expensive 10.11.

Back Sunil Narine for Top Kolkata Bowler @ 10/34.33

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