Given how things stand in Pepsi IPL 2014, Match 54 – which features the Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad – promises to be a huge contest.
KKR have 16 points from 13 matches and are already through to the Playoffs. But they have a huge motivation to go ahead and win this match; two points from this match, and a convincing win, will propel them to the top two in the standings, which will give them a second dash at qualifying for the Final.
For Sunrisers Hyderabad, the road ahead is pretty straightforward – win to stay in the race to the Playoffs. SRH are coming on the back of two fantastic victories; they successfully chased down 161 against Royal Challengers Bangalore and followed it up by overhauling the Chennai Super Kings by scoring 189 in a run-chase.
RCB, with five wins from 13 matches, have been eliminated from the race to the Playoffs. In their most recent outing, the bowling attack copped some severe punishment and leaked 195 runs, which were 30 too many for the RCB batsmen to chase down.
Since qualifying for the Playoffs, Chennai Super Kings have finished on the wrong side of the result. They’ve been defeated by Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad in their last three matches. In their most recent outing, CSK posted 185 runs on the board, before they were blown away by David Warner and co.
Rajasthan Royals will look to seal their spot in the Playoffs when they take on table-toppers Kings XI Punjab in Match 52 of Pepsi IPL 2014.
Convincing for most part of the season, both teams were at the receiving end in their previous matches – against the Mumbai Indians. KXIP are sitting pretty at the top of the table and need one more win to be certain of a top-two finish – which comes with the incentive of a second opportunity to make the final. With the competition for the third and fourth Playoffs spots becoming intense, RR will be keen to seal their post-season berth now, rather than leaving it until the last league match.
Match 51 of Pepsi IPL 2014 will feature the Mumbai Indians and the Delhi Daredevils.
MI, by virtue of consecutive wins against the Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab, are alive in the race to qualify for the Playoffs. In their most recent outing, at Mohali, they became the only team to get the better of KXIP in both league matches this season. Despite the back-to-back wins, the criterion remains the same for MI – they still have to win their remaining two matches and hope other results fall in place to aid their progress to the Playoffs.
Delhi Daredevils, who’ve had a largely forgettable season, will be desperate for some joy. The team has won only two of their 12 league fixtures so far and lies at the floor of the table. Since their last victory – incidentally, against the Mumbai Indians on April 27 – the team has lost seven matches in a row. In their most-recent outing, they posted 164 runs on the board, yet couldn’t defend the same as KXIP knocked off the runs in the final over.
The Chennai Super Kings and Sunrisers Hyderabad will compete for two points in Match 50 of Pepsi IPL 2014.
CSK have already confirmed their berth in the Playoffs. In recent times, the team has suffered a couple of hiccups, losing to Royal Challengers Bangalore and most recently to the Kolkata Knight Riders. The team will want to get back to its winning ways quickly, for they will be keen finish the league season among the top two teams and head to the Playoffs with some winning momentum.
Sunrisers Hyderabad defeated Royal Challengers Bangalore in their previous outing to stay in the race for the Playoffs. They not only need a victory to remain in the race, but also need to win big to improve their net run-rate, which is the worst amongst all the teams still in contention for the Playoffs.
Match 49 of Pepsi IPL 2014 will feature the Kolkata Knight Riders clashing with the Royal Challengers Bangalore.
This is a huge contest, given how the teams have stacked up in the standings at this point. KKR have an edge over their opponents, for who it is a do-or-die affair. KKR have 14 points from 12 matches and need one more to win to seal the third Playoffs slot. Gautam Gambhir’s team is on a roll, having won five matches on the bounce.
RCB’s defeat to the Sunrisers Hyderabad has made things difficult for the team from Garden City. The way the table has taken shape, there is a possibility of one of five teams progressing to the Playoffs on 14 points, and for RCB, who have 10 points from 12 matches, to stay in the race, they have to win both their remaining fixtures and hope other results will help their cause too.