Cricket Indian Premier League Prediction
Lucknow Super Giants vs Punjab Kings - Match Preview
🏏 15 April 2023 - 18:00 GMT +0
In their third-ever game in their home city, the Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) will be hoping to preserve their perfect home record whilst also leapfrogging Rajasthan Royals to the top of the Indian Premier League (IPL) with what could be a 4-1 record if successful against mid-table Punjab Kings. Lucknow continued to roll on in a winning manner despite missing star wicket-taker Mohsin Khan, who picked figures of 3/24 the only time these sides met in 2022 (a 20-run win to LSG in Pune).
The two most comprehensive of their three wins to date have been at the expansive Ekana Cricket Stadium, which preceded what was then the highest successful run chase of the tournament - 213 against RCB in Bengaluru in dramatic circumstances. Lucknow came into the weekend with the league’s second-fastest run rate (9.71rpo) as a consequence and bossed the middle overs with both bat (10.18rpo) and ball (7.20rpo), led by former West Indian captain Nicholas Pooran and leg-spin bowler Ravi Bishnoi respectively.
That has allowed LSG to forgive themselves for just one powerplay wicket in their last three matches and KL Rahul’s poor powerplay run rate of 6.58rpo (compared with the league average of 8.88rpo after 18 matches). They already boast five bowlers with at least three season wickets each, the most recent of which was veteran Amit Mishra after dismissing Virat Kohli at deep midwicket in their last outing. At a venue where spinners took 13 wickets at 6.92rpo in the first two games of 2023, they may be again inclined to field three spin bowlers.
The titleless Punjab Kings are desperately seeking a greater array of match-winning efforts after completing four matches with captain Shikhar Dhawan (233 runs at 8.79rpo) still their only player with 100+ season runs to his name. The fast bowling duo of Nathan Ellis and Arshdeep Singh account for 60% of their 20 wickets taken so far. Opening bat Prabhsimran Singh’s place was described by assistant coach Brad Haddin as “safe” despite consecutive ducks, whilst there were some positives as Matt Short top scored with 36 at number three, whilst Kagiso Rabada conceded 36 runs in his first game of 2023.
But their eight-wicket defeat to Sunrisers Hyderabad two starts back means they have now lost seven of their last eight games at an opposition venue, and that loss could have been so much more embarrassing had Shikhar Dhawan not contributed 52 of the 55 runs they scored for the final partnership on the way to a rare 99 not out. Even after that effort from their captain, they are still one of the worst death overs batting sides of the season (10.13rpo), whilst not doing any better with the ball in the final four overs (2/118 at 13.11rpo). Liam Livingstone will again be battling time to be fit for this contest after a slight muscle strain when training for Punjab’s last game against Gujarat, with captain Dhawan predicting on Thursday that he might need “another three or four days”.
⚡ Key battle: IPL veteran Amit Mishra has made two successful appearances for the Super Giants this year (2/23 and 1/18) before being subbed out for an Impact Player on both occasions and, if he can continue to improve an already imposing H2H record of 3/39 against Punjab captain Shikhar Dhawan, will be on the verge of a third. Since the start of 2022, Dhawan has an IPL average of 80.33 from nine victories (4x 50s) and 29.00 from eight losses (1x 50).
📋 Stat attack: No batter managed to record a half-century in the only meeting between these sides in 2022 (Quinton de Kock top-scored with 46).
- KL Rahul came into today with a scoring rate of just 6.58rpo during the powerplay overs of this IPL.
- Rahul has never scored a half-century against Punjab Kings with a best of 42 from six attempts.
- Similarly, Krunal Pandya has a top score of just 34 from his nine innings against Punjab (average: 19.57).
- Arshdeep Singh was the only Punjab bowler to take wickets in all three of their games before today.
- Mark Wood was Lucknow’s only bowler to take wickets in three different matches prior to this game (5/14, 3/49 and 1/32) in his three games.
- Rahul Chahar had picked multiple wickets in just one of his last seven IPL matches prior to today.
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