Rajasthan Royals will look to roll with the momentum from its stupendous run at home while taking on the host Kolkata Knight Riders, which is licking its wounds after a mauling from Delhi Daredevils in its last match.
The match at the Eden Gardens on Friday evening will see the meeting of two differently situated teams: Rajasthan Royals has form and consistency on its side after securing six wins from nine outings and will seek to consolidate its current third position in the league while defending champion Kolkata Knight Riders has done little to justify its status, losing seven of 10 outings.
Rahul Dravid has reinforced his pre-eminence in Indian cricket by transforming a relatively modest Royals squad into a winning combination while his Knight Riders counterpart, Gautam Gambhir, is experiencing the low after the success last season.
Knight Riders is in the doldrums owing to a dysfunctional batting, and that has been the main reason behind its repeated failures. Coach Trevor Bayliss came down hard on his batsmen after the struggling Delhi Daredevils beat them in Raipur on Wednesday.
Bayliss said the repeated inability of his side to put up a substantial score on the board has put lot of pressure on the bowlers and the fielders.
After suffering a bunch of defeats, the team’s motivation levels also seem to have touched the lowest ebb. The Knight Riders now face the almost improbable task of having to win five of their six remaining league matches to even stand a chance of making the playoffs.
With successive wins from its previous two appearances, Rajasthan Royals has the momentum on its side and that will give it the tag of favourite against the Knight Riders on Friday.
The only little problem for the visitor remains the relatively modest record in the outstation matches where it has won just one in four outings.