Kolkata Knight Riders are precariously positioned in IPL

May 19th, 2008 - 8:18 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Shoaib Akhtar

Kolkata, May 19 (IANS) Kolkata Knight Riders got off to an explosive start in the Indian Premier League courtesy Brendon McCullum’s spectacular hundred that swept Bangalore Royal Challengers off their feet in the inaugural game. The script has gone horribly wrong for Knight Riders since then. They have stumbled to one defeat after another and in between managed a couple of victories that kept them afloat. They are now in a do-or-die situation as they square up against table toppers Rajasthan Royals Tuesday.

Knight Riders are precariously perched at sixth place in the standings and with just three matches remaining, they not only have to win them all but some other results may have to pan out to suit them.

They were unfortunate in their last match against Chennai Super Kings as a thunderstorm not only put paid to their chances of a win, but the defeat by the Duckworth-Lewis calculations has made their path to the semi-final that much more difficult.

The Knight Riders batsmen surely need to rise to the occassion. After their pathetic show against Mumbai Indians, getting shot out for 67, they failed to set a formidable target for the Super Kings in the next match.

The form of skipper Sourav Ganguly, who stroked 91 against Deccan Chargers, dipped as he has not fired with the bat in the last two matches. His regaining form is crucial for the Riders.

Riders’ bowling trump-card Shoaib Akhtar twisted his ankle against Super Kings and left the ground after bowling two overs. The hosts would hope Akhtar, who single-handedly scripted the downfall of Delhi Daredevils, to be fit for their vital games ahead.

Rajasthan Royals are already is the last four and with the kind of performance they are displaying, it would be tough for the Riders to challenge them.


Kolkata Knight Riders: Sourav Ganguly (captain), Aakash Chopra, Ajit Agarkar, Ashok Dinda, Brad Hodge, David Hussey, Debabrata Das, Iqbal Abdulla, Ishant Sharma, Laxmi Shukla, Mohammad Hafeez, Murali Kartik, Salman Butt, Siddarth Kaul, Shoaib Akhtar, Tatenda Taibu, Umar Gul, Wriddhiman Prasanta Saha (wicket-keeper).

Rajasthan Royals: Shane Warne (captain and coach), Aditya Angle, Swapnil Asnodkar, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammad Kaif, Kamran Akmal (wicket-keeper), Sumit Khatri, Taruwar Kohli, Mahesh Rawat, Darren Lehmann, Dimitri Mascarenhas, Parag More, Morne Morkel, Pankaj Singh, Munaf Patel, Niraj Patel, Yusuf Pathan, Anup Revandkar, Jaydev Shah, Graeme Smith, Sohail Tanvir, Siddharth Trivedi, Shane Watson, Younus Khan, Justin Langer, Dinesh Salunke

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