Dinesh Karthik, the Kolkata Knight Riders skipper, has been hopeful that his side would manage to qualify for the playoffs stage of the Indian Premier League. The Jacques Kallis-coached side is currently placed sixth on the league points table, but they have a healthy net run rate of +0.350.
Kolkata Knight Riders are at a precarious position after losing three matches on the trot after a great start of four wins in first five matches. The Dinesh Karthik-led side has been overreliant on Andrey Russell and of late has suffered as the West Indian not firing all cylinders.
The Kolkata-based franchise would be needing to win at least four of their upcoming six matches in order to qualify for the playoffs. They possess enough firepower to make that happen, and skipper Karthik, who spoke on the sidelines of a promotional event, sounded positive about his team’s chances.
"Yes we have lost four of our eight matches, but the important thing is that we have won four matches too. I feel if we can get our basics right, we still stand a good chance to qualify (for playoffs). We have to win four of our remaining six matches, which is very much possible,” he said, reported TOI.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore have had a terrible run in this edition of the Indian Premier League so far, as they have lost all but one of the eight matches played. The bottom-placed side will be facing KKR in their next match, and it will be an interesting contest for over 400 runs were scored the previous time these two sides met.
KKR had their task cut out as they were chasing a target of 206 but the big-hitting Andre Russell sealed the match for them with fiery innings of 48 in 13 deliveries. KKR pacer Harry Gurney, who made his Indian Premier League debut earlier this season, feels that RCB are a dangerous side, and they will have plans for the whole team, and not just skipper Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers.
"See all IPL teams have world-class players. RCB are no different. So it’s important to focus on all the players and not just one or two. I personally feel we should concentrate more on what we can do and make sure we do that consistently," Gurney said, on the sidelines of a promotional event in Kolkata, reported TNN.
"They are always a dangerous side given the quality they have, so we won’t be underestimating them. They’ll look to turn it around after a poor run of games,” he added.
"Obviously we are not on a great run, but fortunately we had begun well. We go into the second half of the competition with destiny in our hands,” expressed the 32-year-old.
The IPL is a tightly scheduled tournament, and KKR had played their previous five games in ten days, with three of them being away games. However, the two-time champions have played their previous match on April 14, and would next face RCB on April 19 at the Eden Gardens, and Gurney welcomed the five-day break, a luxury in the franchise based tournament.
"This break has come at a perfect time for us. This allowed us to freshen up and train hard for the next game. It is from here that you take the momentum to the knockout stage, and in that respect we are not too down and are excited about the next few games,” he signed off.
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