IPL 2013: Kolkata Knight Riders vs Pune Warriors – Live IPL Score
Even though both Kolkata Knight Riders and Pune Warriors India lie at the bottom-half of the table in the sixth edition of the domestic Twenty20 league, the two teams cannot be compared for one simple reason — the former are the defending champions while the latter finished at the bottom last year.
And Gautam Gambhir & Co. will hope to prove their superiority when the two teams meet for the second time within a week at the JSCA International Cricket Stadium here on Wednesday.
Having won their first encounter rather comfortably, the Knights go into this match as favourites especially after registering their first back-to-back wins in the tournament this season. In their match against Royal Challengers Bangalore here on Sunday, it was disciplined bowling that helped them succeed over their stronger rivals and all eyes will be on Sunil Narine as whether he can repeat his magic again. Narine has been exceptional throughout the tournament and has bagged 22 wickets from 14 matches.
Sachithra Senanayake, who opened the bowling against RCB in the last match and returned figures of 1-18, will also be handy in these conditions where the pitch is slightly on the slower side. Along with these two tweakers Lakshmipathy Balaji, Rajat Bhatia and Jacques Kallis are expected to shoulder the attack.
But their batting remains a concern especially after how they faltered trying to chase down 115 runs against RCB.
However, for Pune Warriors, who are out of contention, have only pride at stake and will hope for a morale boosting win against the defending champions. Both Robin Uthappa and skipper Aaron Finch have been in fine nick and they will have to fire if Pune are to stage an upset.