Cricket Indian Premier League Prediction
Punjab Kings vs Royal Challengers Bangalore - Match Preview
🏏 20 April 2023 - 14:00 GMT +0
With more than one-third of the 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL) already completed, Punjab Kings will host Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in match 27 on Thursday afternoon local time. This game will see two of the three teams who have taken part in every IPL but have never won the title (Delhi Capitals the other) lock horns at the IS Bindra Stadium in Mohali.
After defeats by eight wickets to Sunrisers Hyderabad and six wickets to Gujarat Titans, Punjab King got back to winning ways on Saturday against Lucknow Super Giants (LSG). The victory was all the more impressive as Punjab Kings were without their skipper Shikhar Dhawan (shoulder injury), and had Sam Curran deputising as captain, the first time he had led a professional first-team let alone an IPL side!
With the bat, the Kings will be hoping for the return of Dhawan at the top of the order. Not only has he played more than 200 IPL games and hit 6477 runs, but he is also averaging 116.50 this season and has a strike rate of 146.57, his highest strike rate across 16 IPL campaigns. In his absence, it was Zimbabwe all-rounder Sikandar Raza who top-scored against LSG with 57 runs from 41 balls.
Captain Curran produced the top bowling figures for Punjab Kings on Saturday (3/31) and it was death-bowling at its best from the left-arm medium-fast pacer. He conceded only five runs and picked up the wicket of Marcus Stoinis in the 18th over before closing out the innings with 2-7. Arshdeep Singh also continues to have a strong tournament and comes into this match looking to pick up at least one wicket for a sixth successive IPL game.
Ahead of Wednesday’s IPL fixture, RCB had the Orange Cap holder in Faf du Plessis, the sixth leading run-scorer in Virat Kohli, and the leading six-hitter in Glenn Maxwell. However, in spite of these impressive batting figures, they have lost three of their last four games. There is speculation about whether du Plessis will be able to play in this game after he required treatment whilst batting in Monday’s high-scoring defeat to Chennai Super Kings (CSK). The RCB captain confirmed in the post-match press conference that he had experienced discomfort in the rib area whilst fielding and his 259 runs at the top of the order in this campaign would be hard to replace.
Mohammed Siraj has been the standout bowler for RCB across the competition so far. The India international has racked up 69 dot balls and eight wickets from his 120 deliveries and is yet to go wicketless in an inning. All six of RCB’s bowlers dismissed one batter against CSK, but Vijaykumar Vyshak’s figures of 1/62 were the second-worst in the tournament in terms of runs conceded. It was a reality check for the 26-year-old pace bowler who had announced himself to the IPL with figures of 3/20 against Delhi Capitals only two days earlier.
After 30 matches between the sides, Punjab Kings lead the head-to-head 20-10 and on Thursday afternoon will be targeting their sixth win in seven clashes with RCB. The forecast is for the temperature to be in the mid-high 20s throughout this game although there is a risk of an isolated thunderstorm in the second half of the contest.
⚡ Players to watch: After Nathan Ellis had impressed in his early-season absence, Kagiso Rabada had to bide his time to get a chance for Punjab Kings. However, he has played the last two matches and dismissed Krunal Pandya and Nicholas Pooran in successive balls on Saturday to add to the wicket of Wriddhiman Saha (Ra bada's 100th IPL dismissal) against Gujarat Titans.
At the time of writing, Glenn Maxwell has the highest strike rate (197.75) of any player to have accrued more than 150 runs in the 2023 IPL. He cleared the boundary eight times in his 36 balls against CSK and has hit 21% of the 89 balls he has faced for six.
📋 Stat attack: RCB has struck the highest opening partnership and most powerplay runs in four of their five games this year.
- Kagiso Rabada has taken at least one wicket in 11 of his last 12 IPL appearances.
- Arshdeep Singh averages a wicket every 13 balls at the IS Bindra Stadium, Mohali.
- Kagiso Rabada to Virat Kohli in the IPL: 3/27 from 24 balls.
- During the middle overs (7-16) RCB averaged 6.20 sixes per innings, the highest of any team this season.
- The average first innings score in the IPL at the IS Bindra Stadium is 177.
Delhi Capitals vs Kolkata Knight Riders - Match Preview
🏏 20 April 2023 - 18:00 GMT +0
It will be a bottom half of the table battle for match number 28 of the 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL) when the Delhi Capitals host the Kolkata Knight Riders at Arun Jaitley Stadium in Delhi. Outside of a Venkatesh Iyer firestorm and a Rinku Singh miracle, KRR has been largely disappointing this season, but nowhere near as bad as Delhi who are yet to win a game in this tournament through five matches.
There is no other way to put it than to say Delhi has been horrible in 2023, registering the lowest average number of runs per innings (154), the most average wickets lost per innings (nine), the slowest run rate (7.73rpo) and the fewest number of sixes per match (three). With the ball, things have been a little bit better, but the Ricky Ponting-led franchise still ranks last for the number of wickets taken (24) from their five matches while also going at the most runs per wicket with 37.58, more than four more runs than the next worst side. Whether it is tactics or personnel, there need to be some serious changes made at Delhi ahead of the next season.
The good news for Delhi heading into this match is that they have won three of the last five H2Hs encounters with Kuldeep Yadav being instrumental by taking eight wickets in the two wins he played in. Most recently, Delhi lost a match they could easily have won against RCB after keeping the Du Plessis-led side to just 174 runs from 20 overs. But of course, there was a top-order collapse, losing four wickets in the powerplay that saw Delhi struggle to get past 150. Eyes will again be on Delhi’s captain David Warner who did go harder in the last match before being caught for 19 from 13. He does have a 43-ball century against Kolkata to his name, scored back in 2017 when at the top of the Sunrisers order.
Kolkata sat seventh on the table after five rounds of competition with just two wins. The good news is that there are plenty of other teams around that mark, so a win against Delhi will have Kolkata right back in the playoff mix. It’s clear the Knight Riders have a plan to go hard and keep going hard, which has led to their run rate being 9.86rpo across the tournament - easily the fastest-scoring side. Where Kolkata needs to improve is with the ball with them conceding an average of 186.40 runs per innings while only taking 28 wickets across five matches and going at 9.78rpo, also the highest of the tournament.
Their most recent match saw a five-wicket loss to Mumbai despite a massive knock of 104 from just 51 balls by Venkatesh Iyer, who has been the Impact Player to have the greatest ‘impact’ in this tournament. Once again for Kolkata, it was issued with the ball that allowed Mumbai to reach 186 in fewer than 18 overs. Suyash Sharma was the best of the Kolkata bowlers with 2/27 from four overs but every other bowler went for at least 9.50rpo, including Sunil Narine who surprisingly went for 41 runs from just three overs. Narine will be hoping to use his past record of 25 wickets at 20.92 against Delhi with an economy of 6.62rpo to improve his overall figures in this tournament.
⚡ Key battle: Delhi opener Prithvi Shaw has started the tournament in terrible form, having passed ten on just two occasions. He will be looking to target Kolkata’s Shardul Thakur early, who he has taken for 42 runs from just 16 balls in the IPL previously.
📋 Stat attack: Kolkata conceded the highest opening partnership and most powerplay runs in all five of their games this year.
- No Delhi Capitals bowler currently sits in the top 25 wicket-takers in the 2023 IPL.
- Venkatesh Iyer is averaging three sixes per batting innings during this IPL.
- Arun Jaitley Stadium has the lowest average first innings score of any ground in this IPL with 167.
- Rahmanullah Gurbaz is averaging just 18 while scoring at 6.35rpo in the powerplay this season.
- Umesh Yadav has removed David Warner five times in the IPL while Warner has scored 94 runs from 64 balls against the fast bowler.
- Kolkata has had a different bowler return their best figures in each of their five matches this season.
- Rovman Powell scored his 41 runs against Kolkata at a rate of 11.16rpo.
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