Preview: Bottom-Placed KXIP Face In-Form RCB in a Must-Win Game

Bottom-placed Kings XI Punjab take on the Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore in Sharjah on Thursday.

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IPL
2 min read
Bottom-placed Kings XI Punjab take on the Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Thursday.
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Bottom-placed Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) will be under tremendous pressure as they now face a must-win situation when they take on the Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Thursday.

After losing six of their seven games, the KL Rahul-led KXIP are languishing at the bottom of the points table with two points. Despite having the top-two leading run-getters of the season in skipper Rahul (387 runs) and Mayank Agarwal (337), KXIP have failed in getting wins.

Preview: Bottom-Placed KXIP Face In-Form RCB in a Must-Win Game

Barring the duo, the other KXIP batters have failed to click and lack of an all-round effort has been clearly visible. Same is the condition of the bowling attack as except Mohammad Shami and Ravi Bishnoi, the others have been off-colour.

However, KXIP can draw some confidence from the fact their solitary win in ongoing season had come against RCB.

Moreover, Chris Gayle, who has warmed the bench in the previous games, is likely to get a game on Thursday.

Looking at the perfect batting conditions here, Gayle could create an absolute carnage but remains to be seen how quickly the self-proclaimed 'Universe Boss' gets into the act.

The KXIP think-tank might axe an out-of-form Glenn Maxwell in order to accommodate Gayle.

Kings XI Punjab opening batsman Chris Gayle is back on the training ground, having recovered from his stomach bug.
Kings XI Punjab opening batsman Chris Gayle is back on the training ground, having recovered from his stomach bug.
(Photo: BCCI/IPL)   

RCB, which stand at the third place in points table with 10 points in their kitty, will aim to consolidate their position in the table.

The RCB top-order comprising Aaron Finch, Devdutt Padikkal, Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers are in good touch and can destroy even the best bowling attack.

Similarly, their bowlers have also stepped up whenever the team needed. The arrival of Chris Morris has further boosted the pace attack and the South African all-rounder can also prove to be handy with the bat if needed.

Isuru Udana too has also been decent with the ball while Yuzvendra Chahal and Washington Sundar have executed their plans perfectly, creating trouble for the opposition batters.

While Kohli and Co will look to avenge their last defeat, KXIP will certainly aim to spoil the party and in such a case, another thrilling contest is likely to be witnessed at a batting-friendly Sharjah wicket.

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