Aakash Chopra previewed the match between KXIP and KKR which was eventually won by KKR by two runs after Dinesh Karthik scored 48 and Shubman Gill scored 47. In reply, KXIP were on course for victory with both openers skipper KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal scoring fifties as they stitched together an unbeaten 115 runs partnership.
But they lost a few wickets and their team management was to blame as they send the likes of Prabh Simran Singh ahead of big hitter Glenn Maxwell and dependable Mandeep Singh, who failed to open his account. They needed 14 to win in the last over and six in the last ball to tie the match, but Glenn Maxwell could hit a boundary.
Aakash Chopra: KXIP Are In Very Bad Situation, And Chris Gayle Should Play Instead Of Glenn Maxwell If Fit
With the loss, KXIP have lost their fifth successive match and won one and lost six to accumulate only two points — to stay at the bottom of the points table. KKR, on the other hand, are in 3rd spot with four wins and two losses, accumulating eight points.
“Kings XI Punjab are in a very bad situation, and KKR are not that bad actually. They did not start the tournament well but have accumulated three wins and even defeated CSK in their last match, a match they could have lost.”
“Kings XI Punjab lost the first match in the Super Over, (a game) they should have won. After that they won one match convincingly against RCB but have lost five matches other than that. If they lose today, this is their halfway stage, if they lose six of their seven matches after that they can bid goodbye to their campaign.”
“In terms of the team changes required, I feel Gayle will play because they were saying that he would have played the previous match if he had been fit. If he plays, Glenn Maxwell has to go out because he has not scored runs, and there is a time when you have to change,” Aakash Chopra added.
Aakash Chopra hoped that Chris Gayle should play if fit, but he was still in hospital after a stomach upset for food poisoning. KXIP, however, made one change by including Chris Jordan in place of injured Sheldon Cottrell. Aakash Chopra wanted Glenn Maxwell to be replaced, but he was selected with Chris Gayle in hospital. Aakash Chopra correctly predicted that KXIP’s chances are more than over.
Aakash Chopra: KXIP Should Include Mujeeb Ur Rahman And KKR Should Decide Upon Including Kuldeep Yadav
KKR posted 164/6, and in reply, KXIP scored 162/5. Mujeeb Ur Rahman was expensive as he gave away 44 runs in four overs. Both Rahul Tripathi and Nitish Rana played too many dot balls and got out cheaply, but KKR skipper Dinesh Karthik returned to form with 58 off 29 deliveries.
“They should also have Mujeeb because he is a good bowler. He was not able to find his length in the last match as there was a huge gap for him after the CPL. And this can happen with everyone, however big a match-winner they might be.”
“So Kings XI Punjab should continue with Mujeeb and definitely play Chris Gayle now, but where he would bat will be a problem. Will Mayank Agarwal bat at No. 3 which is not his ideal position?”
“KKR do not need to make any changes. They will think about Kuldeep and then decide not to play him.”
“In the batting order, they should not use Sunil Narine as a floater. He should be kept for the end or if they lose a wicket in the first couple of overs; he can be sent to hit in the Powerplay but if the Powerplay is over, then Morgan, Dinesh Karthik and Andre Russell should come (ahead of Narine).”
“Andre Russell could prove to be the game-changer in this match. He has been slightly underwhelming thus far. The real Andre Russell has not yet been seen. If you see the Kings XI Punjab bowling, they are a little weak, and in such a case Andre Russell should regain his form and show his importance (in the team).”
“He is also bowling the death overs very well, so he is playing a dual role, and I feel he will contribute in this game,” he concluded.
Prasidh Krishna was the pick of the KKR bowlers with 3 wickets for 29 runs, and Sunil Narine who was reported for suspect bowling action returned with figures of 2/28. All the other bowlers were wicket-less. Andre Russell didn’t bowl as he was injured. Aakash Chopra previewing the match had gone wrong with Chris Gayle not playing, Andre Russell not bowling and Mujeeb Ur Rahman being expensive.