RCB would not want to modify their playing eleven after securing an 8-wicket win over MI in the 5th match of TATA IPL 2023. However, Eden Gardens is special with a pitch that gives away the dew factor to bowlers. One mandatory modification that Faf du Plessis will have to do anyway is replacing Reece Topley with David Willey after Topley sustained an injury.
Hazlewood will not be in the line-up due to a dislocated shoulder. This makes way for bringing in impact players like Suyash Prabhudesai and Anuj Rawat. Siraj and Akash Deep will be back to the team’s rest area if RCB bats second. Meaning, KKR would be first restricted to a lower total, and then there will be a heavy batting line-up looking to win by a huge margin for a better NRR. GT is dominating the charts, but it has a lower NRR of +0.700. RCB wants to dethrone Pandya’s side.
RCB did not use any impact players in the opening fixture against MI, winning it by 8 wickets with 22 balls remaining. The opening pair of Kohli and Plessis brought in 82 and 73 runs, respectively.
KKR has to think about replacing Shardul Thakur. Kulwant Khejroliya is being considered. Thakur gave away 43 runs at an economy rate of 10.75 without picking a wicket. Southee looked better with a higher economy because he sent Prabhsimran Singh and Jitesh Sharma back to the pavilion.
RCB barely has anything to worry about except adjusting to the pitch at Eden Gardens. Akash Deep and Shahbaz Ahmed will navigate the side on the pitch. Dinesh Kartik did not contribute in the previous match; however, Eden Gardens will be a different game altogether.
Nitish Rana-led KKR misses Shreyas Iyer and Shakib Al Hasan. Iyer is out after sustaining an injury, while Hasan is out for personal reasons. Jason Roy could open following a disastrous performance by Mandeep Singh against PBKS, where he scored 2 off 4 balls.
A balance can still be seen with Andre Russell coming up as an all-rounder. Predictions on several cricket sports betting sites will, however, see not just him but also the presence of Umesh Yadav and Tim Southee from KKR against Kohli with the skipper and Siraj and Willey in the bowling unit.
KKR lost to PBKS under the DLS method. They were 7 wickets down and unlikely to make a huge impact. Thakur was the last batter with little to risk. No other batter was in the line-up. On the other hand, RCB had a comfortable victory after the openers settled against MI’s bowling unit.
Plessis will continue leading the RCB. He will be backed by Maxwell and Kohli, along with the expertise of DK, Harshal Patel, and Ahmed. Impact players will appear for the first time for the RCB. Nitish Rana takes charge in the absence of Shreyas. He comes with the bowling unit led by Southee, Umesh Yadav, and Kulwant Khejroliya. Andre Russell is likely to bat a bit early for power shots.