Kolkata Knight Riders will look to quickly get back to winning ways when it takes on Rajasthan Royals at the Brabourne Stadium here on Monday.
Both teams come into the game on the back of big defeats in their respective last matches and will hope to turn things around quickly.
After a promising start with three wins in the first four matches, Knight Riders have been outplayed in its last two matches against Delhi Capitals and Sunrisers Hyderabad.
A few concerns
The 2021 finalist has a few concerns with its batting as the openers are failing to give a good start.
Venkatesh Iyer has not been able to replicate the form he showed in the second half of last year’s IPL, while Ajinkya Rahane had meagre returns from the first five matches before he was replaced by Aaron Finch in the last match.
The two-time winner will also need skipper Shreyas Iyer and Nitish Rana to step up and produce some consistent performances.
The team’s bowling — led by the standout performer Umesh Yadav (10 wickets) and well supported by Sunil Narine — has been pretty good. However, Pat Cummins’ form is a worry as the Aussie pacer has gone at nearly 12 runs per over.
Royals come into the game after a big defeat to Gujarat Titans. The team’s bowling lacked firepower in the absence of Trent Boult and the 2008 champion will hope the Kiwi pacer is available for the game.
Another issue is the lower-order batting, with Riyan Parag unable to justify the opportunities he has got so far. He could be replaced by Yashasvi Jaiswal or Karun Nair, though it could cost the team a sixth-bowling option.