IPL 2018, KKR vs RR: 5 reasons why Kolkata can beat Rajasthan tonight
KKR definitely have the upper hand going into tonight's crucial encounter.
The Rajasthan Royals-Kolkata Knight Riders clash comes at a crucial juncture with five teams in contention for two playoffs spots. With both teams having 12 points from 12 games and a negative net run rate, they must win their last two games to qualify for the playoffs.
Kolkata Knight Riders were thoroughly beaten by Mumbai Indians but bounced back in spectacular fashion, scoring a mammoth 245 against Kings XI Punjab, winning the match by 31 runs.
On the other hand, Rajasthan Royals have been resurgent, winning three games in a row, thanks to Jos Buttler's heroics at the top of the order. Rajasthan Royals were almost out of the tournament with six losses in nine matches, but have managed to stay afloat with some superb recent performances. However, KKR may be a bridge too far for them:
Here are five reasons why KKR can beat Rajasthan tonight:
#1 Rajsthan's overdependence on Buttler
Fortunes have changed rapidly for Rajasthan's wicketkeeper-batsman. Batting down the order, Buttler struggled to score runs but things changed after his promotion to the top.
Buttler has scored five consecutive fifties, equalling Virender Sehwag's feat, and has kept Rajasthan's hopes alive. The first two fifties did not result in a win but that made Buttler bat more responsibly as he finished the match off for Rajasthan on the last two occasions.
In all three victories, Rajasthan Royals have been heavily dependent on Buttler and no other batsman has contributed much. Of the 506 runs scored by Rajasthan in the last three matches, Buttler has scored 271 i.e. a mammoth 53.55%. If KKR can get the wicket of Buttler early then half their work is done.