However remote its chances may be of making the semifinals of the DLF IPL-III, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will have a go at table-topper Mumbai Indians (MI) in the final league game here at the Eden Gardens on Monday.
After a topsy-turvy journey through the tournament, KKR's eight-wicket victory against Rajasthan Royals provided a glimmer of hope and the local team will like to make the most of the opportunity, if not to earn a place in the knockout stage at least to erase the bad memory and get a higher placing in the league standing.
With 20 points from 10 wins and three losses and enjoying the highest net run-rate in this tournament, MI is sitting pretty at the top. Even a loss on Monday will not alter MI's position in the tournament.
With this in mind, the MI team management may be tempted to rest some of the seniors including its captain Sachin Tendulkar.
The good news for KKR obviously is the current form its captain Sourav Ganguly is enjoying. At the same time a lot will depend on how the other batsmen rally around him in setting or chasing a target.
KKR's fielding has shown a lot of improvement while its bowling will have to be consistent against a team like MI.
Getting Brendon McCullum to open the batting is perhaps the best decision. Chris Gayle is likely to occupy the No. 3 slot and Cheteshwar Pujara will come in next. Manoj Tiwary and Laxmi Ratan Shukla will follow in later in the order.
KKR, on 12 points and looking for its seventh win, will have the luxury of exactly knowing what margin to win by to move ahead provided the issue is not settled by then.