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IPL 2021 Match 21: Punjab Kings v Kolkata Knight Riders Betting Preview

IPL 2021 Match 20: Sunrisers Hyderabad v Delhi Capitals – Preview, Prediction, Probable Playing XIs and Value Bets.

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IPL 2021: Punjab Kings v Kolkata Knight Riders – Preview, Prediction, Probable Playing XIs and Value Bets.

Match Details
Punjab Kings v Kolkata Knight Riders
Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad
Monday, April 26th, 2021
16:00 SA Time

Betting Preview

The Indian Premier League (IPL) is heading into the Ahmedabad and Delhi legs. The 21st match of the IPL tournament will see Punjab Kings (PBKS) taking on Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. KKR have completely dominated this rivalry, they’ve faced each other on 27 occasions and KKR have beaten PBKS 18 times. Both the teams are currently in the bottom half of the table.

Punjab Kings went into a panic mode in their fourth match of the season against SRH, making a bunch of changes. They lost that match but scripted a solid comeback against Mumbai Indians in the next game, winning by nine wickets. However, they haven’t found the right balance so far and will need to make few changes going into the Ahmedabad leg. PBKS’ bowling hasn’t been as good as they would’ve wanted but Ravi Bishnoi’s return has strengthened the attack. Their batting unit could be more menacing if Nicholas Pooran finds his form.

Kolkata Knight Riders, on the other hand, have suffered four straight losses and are languished at the bottom of the table. KKR have plenty of issues to ponder on, mainly their feeble top order which has collapsed time and again. The slow scoring rates of their top order batters has been a major issue for KKR, not just this season but since 2020. Captain Morgan’s disastrous form with the bat is also a major concern for KKR. They haven’t been able to make the best use of Andre Russell, which has cost them dearly. KKR bowling attack needs strengthening and Lockie Ferguson can provide that but if will he get an opportunity needs to be seen.

Injury and Availability News

Both Punjab Kings and Kolkata Knight Riders will have all their players available for the match. Punjab Kings are expected to bring Jhye Richardson back considering the change in the venue while KKR are very likely to play Lockie Ferguson.

Probable Playing XI

Punjab Kings

KL Rahul (c/wk), Mayank Agarwal, Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, Deepak Hooda, Shahrukh Khan, Fabian Allen, Jhye Richardson, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh.

Kolkata Knight Riders

Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Eoin Morgan (c), Andre Russell, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Pat Cummins, Harbhajan Singh, Lockie Ferguson, Prasidh Krishna, Varun Chakravarthy.

Pitch and Conditions

The Narendra Modi Stadium, popularly known as The Motera stadium is a tricky venue. The pitches offer significant assistance for pace bowlers under the lights. The average first innings score at Motera in T20s this year has been 138 while the number shoots up in T20Is to 171.

Key Players to Watch Out For

KL Rahul: The Punjab Kings skipper has been in a scintillating form in the IPL. Rahul provides PBKS with stability and security, he has the game to play according to the situation and has already won his team a game with a composed half-century against Mumbai Indians. KL Rahul has scored 221 runs in 5 matches so far this season with an average of 55.25.

Mohammed Shami: Punjab Kings’ spearhead, Mohammed Shami has become a fine all-format bowler in recent years. Shami has been able to extract the movement off the pitch and nail yorkers at the death more consistently. Shami has picked 45 wickets in IPL since 2019. This year, he has picked 6 wickets in 5 games at an economy of 8 RPO. The much improved pacer should enjoy the Ahmedabad surface.

Dinesh Karthik: KKR’s former skipper is known for his finishing abilities. Dinesh Karthik is one of the best range-hitters in the limited-overs cricket. Karthik had a forgettable season in IPL 2020 but has scored 97 runs at an average of 32 at a strike rate of 133 in this edition. With KKR’s batting not firing, Karthik will have to step up against Punjab Kings’ pace attack.

Pat Cummins: The Australian pace ace has been a part of KKR since 2020. Pat Cummins picked 12 wickets at an economy of under 8 in the last season but has been expensive so far this year. However, if the Motera pitch is similar to that of the recent England series, Cummins should get the early movement and could a huge threat for PBKS. Pat Cummins’ pace hitting has been impressive and this time it’s even better as he has shown with 82 runs in IPL 2021 at a strike rate of 190.7.

What Bets To Take

Punjab Kings

KL Rahul to be PBKS’s top batsman at 3.00.

Mohammad Shami to be PBKS’s top bowler at 3.50.

Kolkata Knight Riders

Nitish Rana to be KKR’s top batsman at 4.00.

Varun Chakravarthy/Pat Cummins to be KKR’s top bowler at 4.00.

Prediction: Punjab Kings to win at 1.76.

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