After a hurricane century by Chris Gayle that lowered the colours of Kolkata Knight Riders in the last game at the Eden Gardens, will it be the turn of Paul Valthaty of Kings XI Punjab in Saturday's clash between the two teams?

Since the 27-year-old Mumbaikar hammered an unbeaten 120 against Chennai Super Kings and emerged as one of the leading run scorers of IPL-IV, the city is agog with the expectation of this man's explosive batting in the company of his skipper Adam Gilchrist.

KKR's 19-run victory over Delhi Daredevils has given the host the right frame of mind ahead of this encounter. KKR will like to take the maximum out of the next three home matches.

But to do that the home side first has to come to terms with dangerous batsmen like Gilchrist, Valthaty, Shaun Marsh and to some extent Dinesh Karthik and David Hussey.

Brett Lee is back to lead the pace attack with Lakshmipathy Balaji. Backed by quality spinners in Shakib Al Hassan and Iqbal Abdulla and supported by Yusuf Pathan, KKR will aim to restrict the visiting side to a manageable total before using its own batting strength to knock off the runs.

The sudden loss of form of Jacques Kallis and lack of runs for the opening wicket ought to worry its coach Dav Whatmore, but the most comforting part is that the middle-order has been doing well, especially Bengal captain Manoj Tiwary, whose unbeaten 61 was instrumental in KKR reaching a challenging total against Delhi and eventually winning the game.

The biggest worry for KKR is the inconsistent show by star batsman Yusuf Pathan. The big hitting right-hander, who is capable of winning matches on his own, needs to fire.

KKR will not have the services of wicketkeeper-batsman Brad Haddin. The Aussie has been diagnosed with a fractured finger and is unlikely to take further part in the tournament. It is still not known who the team has asked for as a replacement.

Keywords: KKRKings XIIPL 2011

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