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IPL 2021, KKR vs PBKS Preview: Kolkata Knight Riders look to cement playoff hopes

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IPL 2021: KL Rahul will be desperate to do well against Eoin Morgan-led KKR.© BCCI/IPL

Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will be looking to consolidate their position in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 standings when they take on Punjab Kings (PBKS) at the Dubai International Stadium in Dubai on Friday. The Eoin Morgan-led side has enjoyed good form in the UAE leg to significantly improve their chances of making the playoffs. KKR have won three of their four matches in the United Arab Emirates and climbed to the fourth spot in the points table, their only loss coming in a cliffhanger against Chennai Super Kings.

In their last game against Delhi Capitals (DC), KKR won the match for less than three wickets, with Sunil Narine being the bowler with figures of 2/19. Venkatesh Iyer hit a boundary with figures of 2/29, while Lockie Ferguson finished with 2/10 in 10 overs.

The Kolkata-based franchise would expect a similar performance with the ball against PBKS.

With a strong batting line-up, KKR had their share of struggles against DC as they lost seven wickets before crossing the finishing line. This is one area in which they would hope to improve.

A win would greatly boost KKR’s playoff hopes, with the team currently on 10 points from 11 matches.

PBKS, on the other hand, will face a major blow to their playoff hopes if they fail to win on Friday.

Currently with eight points from 11 matches, PBKS will need a miracle against KKR to qualify for the playoffs if they put up a second best performance.

The KL Rahul-led side have won just one of their four matches in the UAE as hopes of reaching the end of the season have been dashed.

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Against Mumbai Indians, PBKS could manage only 135/6 in 20 overs, despite a brilliant 42 from Aiden Markram.

A good batting performance will be crucial if PBKS is to get an over for KKR on Friday.

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