Although KKR are still best placed to seal the sole remaining playoffs berth, they cannot yet take anything for granted. Mumbai Indians are breathing down their necks by roaring back into contention after thrashing RR by eight wickets on Tuesday. Although RR and Punjab Kings also stand a mathematical chance of making the last four, it’s primarily a two-way battle between KKR and MI.
“Where is Russell? Where is Lockie?”… Well they are at the training ground, firing in all cylinders 😎💥… https://t.co/IyxEnmV0Dn
— KolkataKnightRiders (@KKRiders) 1633513110000
To avoid all sorts of complicated calculations, KKR will have to beat RR at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Thursday. But MI will have the advantage of stepping on the ground for their last league match against Sunrisers Hyderabad a day later, knowing exactly what is required to qualify.
Nothing to see here, just @tripathirahul52 nailing an 𝙖𝙬𝙬-some square drive! 😍👌#KKR #AmiKKR #KorboLorboJeetbo… https://t.co/iv8gG9Uaxc
— KolkataKnightRiders (@KKRiders) 1633509014000
So KKR will also have to make things as difficult as possible for the Mumbai outfit by improving their net run rate (NRR) as there’s a good chance of both the sides ending up on 14 points and in which case the NRR will come into play.
KKR should take a leaf out of how the MI batters applied themselves against RR on the wicket while reaching the victory target with 70 balls remaining. The Eoin Morgan-led side would love to see Andre Russell back.
The good news is that the big West Indian, who had missed the last three games with a hamstring injury, has resumed training. Russell is not only capable of finishing things with a flurry, but can also bowl some useful overs at the death.