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One of the major issues that proved to be RCB’s Achilles heel last year was their Run rate in Powerlay, they had the 2nd worst run rate and they weren’t in the top 5 in sixes hit. The resounding victory against Mumbai in the opening match of the tournament shows a lot of potential for this year. There was a hint of Vintage Virat in the Red, which has been missing for 3 seasons now.

Having signed Hasranga last year worked to their advantage immensely; he had over 20 wickets in the middle phase last year, and they need him to do the same this year.

They seem to have no end to their problems, Rajat Patidar, who was their star in the playoffs and had a remarkable domestic season, is out, Topley might also be out, and Hazlewood is uncertain whether he will have the same rhythm and match fitness when he plays his first game. Harshal after his golden run in 2021 and 2022 in IPL has conceded 40 or more runs on 4 occasions in his last 8 - 10 appearances in blue. This is KKR’s best chance in the absence of Topley , Hazlewood at death and Hasaranga in middle overs.

Given the lack of middle and lower middle order depth, the Indian lot of Suyash, Anuj, Shahbaz and Lomror have to put in the hard yards. Having a SR of 180 with more than 300 runs last year, DK rescued them on a regular basis. Given his performance in India colors last year, it is highly unlikely he will repeat that feat.

Probable Playing XIs

Kolkata Knight Riders

Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Mandeep Singh, Nitish Rana (c), Venkatesh Iyer, Andre Russell, Rinku Singh, Shardul Thakur, Sunil Narine, Tim Southee, Umesh Yadav, Varun Chakravarthy

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Faf du Plessis (c), Virat Kohli, Glenn Maxwell, Dinesh Karthik ( wk ), Michael Bracewell, Shahbaz Ahmed, Karn Sharma, Harshal Patel, David Willey, Mohammad Siraj, Akash deep


Eden Gardens, Kolkata

-Average Total batting 1st: 161.1
-Average 1st innings winning total: 172
-Highest total: 232/2 - MI vs KKR, 2019
-Lowest total: 49/10 - RCB v KKR, 2017
-Total Match Played: 78
-Batting First Won: 31
-Batting Second Won: 47

Head to Head

Overall: KKR leads by 17-14
Batting 1st: KKR leads by 7-3
Batting 2nd: RCB leads by 11-10
Last 5 Matches: RCB leads by 3-2

Match Ups (IPL)

Kohli v Umesh: 150 off 85, 3 outs
Kohli v Southee: 74 off 63, 2 outs ( overall)
Kohli v Narine: 101 off 98, 3 outs
DK v Umesh: 60 off 32, 1 out
Maxwell v Narine: 58 off 57, 3 outs
Maxwell v Umesh: 17 off 19, 3 outs
Faf v Russell: 47 off 25

Key Players and Fantasy Picks

Faf du Plessis / Virat Kohli

A top order batter should be your 1st priority in Fantasy 11. Faf has been in some surreal form off late with 177 runs at an SR of 143 in BBL and became the 1st centurion in SA 20. He scored 369 runs at an average of 41 (2nd highest). He was the MoM in the opening game for his 73.

Kohli scored a match winning 100 at Eden against KKR in 2019. However his overall nos at the venue are modest with 332 runs at a SR of 127 and an average of 41. Apart from Narine, he has a good head to head record against every bowler in the KKR line up.

Andre Russell

This Caribbean all-rounder is a must-pick in your 11. Andre Russell has been MVP twice and was 2nd on the list last season with his contributions in both departments.
Combined with over
2K runs, he has an astonishing SR of 177, which is the best at a SR in IPL history. Along with Gayle, he also holds the record for hitting 50+ sixes in a season. In the past, he has pulled off games in unimaginable circumstances and in 2019 RCB was at the receiving end during his 13 ball 48 onslaught.

Glenn Maxwell

In 2021 and 2022, Maxwell scored 814 runs for RCB at a SR of 152. No one scored more runs than him at a better rate and he did it by batting at 4 or below. He is also an effective off spinner who bowled a few economical overs in Powerplay. With Rajat not in the scene and DK not among runs in the recent past, the onus of carrying the middle order solely lies on him.

Wild Card

Rahmanullah Gurbaz

This could be his last game for a while when Roy arrives. Gurbaz had a great outing in the recently held SPL, ILT20, and Abu Dhabi T10 leagues, and he has an SR of over 150 in the T20 format with over 3000 runs. He showed a lot of promise in the opening game with a couple of exquisite hits. Can take the game away from RCB in Powerplay.

Fantasy XI

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