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IPL 2021 Eliminator: Virat Wins Toss, Elects to Bat vs KKR in Knockout Game

The winner of the Eliminator progresses to Qualifier 2 and plays Delhi Capitals for a spot in the IPL final.

Updated
IPL
2 min read
<div class="paragraphs"><p>RCB are playing KKR is the IPL playoffs first knockout match.</p></div>
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RCB skipper Virat Kohli has won the toss and elected to bat first against KKR in the Eliminator of IPL 2021.

Both teams are playing unchanged XIs.

After winning the toss, Kohli said, "Looks like a great wicket, nice and hard. It gets tougher to bat here in Sharjah as the game progresses. No changes. A youngster steps up and wins you a game against a top side like Delhi. Very happy for KS. This is what this tournament is all about. Meetings have been pretty short and sharp. We have the ability to win games, nothing changes this being an Eliminator."

Morgan said, "We would have loved to bowl first anyways. The toss doesn't bother us. We are feeling confident within the group and guys are starting to establish themselves in their roles. We are starting to come good as a team."

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Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore both had contrasting routes to the playoffs. While Bangalore maintained their third place from the first half into the UAE leg, Kolkata made a remarkable turnaround to move from seventh place in the first half to fourth in the second.

The equation for tonight's game is simple; the team that wins the match faces the loser of Qualifier 1 while it will be the end of the road for the other team.

Bangalore had beaten Kolkata by 38 runs during the first phase of the tournament in India but when the two sides met in Abu Dhabi, Kolkata secured a crushing nine-wicket win after bowling out Bangalore for 92.

A bulk of Kolkata's success in the UAE leg, winning five out of seven matches, has been around fantastic starts by their openers Shubman Gill and Venkatesh Iyer. Iyer shined bright with impressive knocks while Gill has been able to stay at the crease for long. Rahul Tripathi and Nitish Rana have chipped in with useful cameos despite the lack of runs from captain Eoin Morgan. The bowling attack, comprising Lockie Ferguson, Shivam Mavi, Varun Chakravarthy, and Sunil Narine have picked wickets consistently.

Bangalore, on the other hand, have seen Glenn Maxwell take responsibility in the batting order apart from wicketkeeper KS Bharat delivering the goods with the bat. Virat Kohli has been on and off while Devdutt Padikkal seems to have got stuck after a few good starts. AB de Villier' hasn't generated the breathtaking finishing touch and Bangalore will be hoping he comes good in the Eliminator. In terms of bowling, Harshal Patel and Yuzvendra Chahal have been shouldering the load, taking wickets, and keeping the opposition in check.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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