Kings XI Punjab are on a roll. A thrilling win against Kolkata Knight Riders has elevated them to the second spot in the Indian Premier League (IPL) and they will be looking to maintain their position when they face defending champions Rajasthan Royals on Tuesday.
The last time both the sides met each other at Cape Town, Kings XI Punjab had the last laugh winning the match convincingly by 27 runs.
At Kingsmead here, Rajasthan Royals will be looking for nothing less than a win to take revenge.
For the defending champions, it has been a topsy-turvy ride this season and despite their win against table toppers Deccan Chargers, Rajasthan Royals are languishing in the deeps of the league just above bottom placed Knight Riders.
Kings XI made a slow start to the IPL but as the tournament progressed they have caught up with the pace. They started with two consecutive losses and the three wins on the trot brought them back in the hunt. Out of seven matches, they have won four and lost three for a healthy win-loss ratio.
Kings XI have one of the most balanced sides in the IPL second season and all-round performances by both bowlers and the batsmen have done the trick for them. Skipper Yuvraj Singh, Mahela Jayawardene, and Simon Katich have come up with good knocks in the tournament and if they get to fire together it will be tough for the inexperienced Rajasthan Royals’ bowling attack.
For Rajasthan Royals, it is the team spirit that has been carrying them through. A depleted Royals have won three of the seven matches they have played in the Twenty20 league. Barring the five-wicket victory over Delhi Daredevils, the win against Kolkata Knight Riders and Saturday’s three-wicket defeat of table-toppers Deccan Chargers have been close.
Rajasthan Royals skipper Shane Warne even lauded the team spirit.
“The batting hasn’t been good in the first six overs. But it is the team spirit that is winning matches for us. From last year to this IPL, our team spirit has been excellent,” said Warne.
Warne lauded his boys for showing incredible courage to pull off close matches. “We are peaking at the right time and hopefully will make the semi-finals,” he said.
The maverick Australian will be again looking to the team spirit to pull off a smart win against Kings XI Punjab.