It will be a Super Sunday of epic proportions in the IPL, as the fans will be treated to two high-profile clashes to bring an exciting end to their weekend. In the first match of the afternoon, two teams involved in the thick of things as far as qualifying for the playoffs are concerned – Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kolkata Knight Riders will clash at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in the southern city. The second match at night will be the glamour contest between two of the biggest names in Indian cricket – MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli as the Royal Challengers Bangalore will host the Chennai Super Kings.
Here we look forward to the two matches which will take place on a weekend bonanza in the IPL.
Sunrisers Hyderabad vs Kolkata Knight Riders
For the visitors, this match is a do-or-die encounter as they are in an urgent need to arrest the sudden decline in form which they are witnessing right now. The outfit from Kolkata are one of the most balanced sides on paper, but many big names have underperformed over the past couple of weeks, leaving them in a conundrum which they find themselves in. They are also heavily reliant upon Andre Russell and despite the big Caribbean’s best efforts, he simply cannot win each and every match on his own. Kolkata sit on the sixth spot on the table with 8 points in 9 matches.
Sunrisers Hyderabad also have issues of their own to address. After a blistering start to the tournament, their form has tapered off in the middle stages. Despite boasting of one of the strongest bowling attacks in the tournament along with having perhaps the most destructive opening pair, there remains the worry of having a soft underbelly in the middle order. The return of Kane Williamson to fitness has allayed this fear somewhat, but this remains an area which the opposition will always target. Hyderabad sit on the fifth spot on the table with 8 points in 8 matches.
The match is a contest between two sides who look extremely strong on paper but have some glaring weaknesses which will certainly make it a fascinating match-up to watch.
Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Chennai Super Kings
Royal Challengers Bangalore don’t have much to play for in the tournament after a poor start all but ensured that they would never be contenders for the playoff spots. But they still boast of some world-class players like Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers in their ranks who have a never-ending hunger to win. Bangalore performed brilliantly with the bat in their last match against KKR, with Virat Kohli stomping his mark on the tournament with a fine century. They managed to post over 200 runs on the board despite missing AB de Villiers. The South African is expected to be back in the side for the clash and will strengthen the team as will the presence of his compatriot Dale Steyn, whose experience will be vital for the RCB bowling unit.
Chennai Super Kings, on the other hand, have had a near-perfect tournament, perched at the top of the points table and all but qualified for the playoffs. Their biggest battle now lies against complacency and they will not want to let their guard down as the tournament now enters its most crucial phase. The team missed the presence of their influential skipper MS Dhoni in their last match against SRH which ended in a loss and will be hoping that ‘Captain Cool’ is fit to take the field in Bangalore.
Despite this being the match-up between the two teams on the opposite ends of the table, the individual quality which both teams possess ensures that fans will be eagerly awaiting the battle.