Punjab Kings have already beaten the Rajasthan Royals once this season.kxp
The schedule for the remaining games of the 2021 VIVO Indian Premier League has been released, with the opening day itself serving up a feisty clash between reigning champions Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings on September 19.
For Punjab Kings fans, they have to wait a couple more days to see their team in action as KL Rahul’s team is expected to take to the field on September 21, and will clash against Rajasthan Royals at the Dubai International Stadium. Both sides have a rich history of playing out high scoring thrillers, with the 2008 champions emerging victorious on both occasions last year.
This time around though it was Punjab Kings who registered a win against the Royals in their previous clash, and the team in red and gold will be hopeful to win again, this time in foreign soil to avenge last season’s defeat.
Next up for the Punjab Kings will be a clash against Sunrisers Hyderabad at Sharjah, followed up by a game against the champions in Abu Dhabi. Punjab’s talismanic batsman Chris Gayle got his only century for his current franchise against Hyderabad back in 2018, and would be eager to repeat such a feat given the smallish boundaries at Sharjah.
Mumbai Indians and Punjab Kings played out that double Super Over game last season in the UAE, and anything akin to that clash this time around is bound to send the cricket world into a frenzy yet again. Punjab will then finish off their campaign with games against Kolkata Knight Riders, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Chennai Super Kings respectively.
Punjab Kings managed to beat RCB this year already thanks to an inspired performance by Harpreet Brar, and the young all-rounder would be rearing to repeat such an outing. Kolkata and Chennai managed to get the better of KL Rahul’s side this year, but with a change in venue, the team would be optimistic for a change in fortunes.
Punjab Kings will be playing three games in Dubai, two in Sharjah and a solitary game in Abu Dhabi in the remainder of the IPL. The franchise will play four evening games, with their final two league matches being afternoon clashes beginning at 3:30pm IST.
With three wins so far in the season, KL Rahul’s side have some catching up to do to keep the playoffs hopes alive. They would need to win at least four of their remaining six matches to guarantee a spot for themselves. Fans of the franchise would fondly remember last season where they won six of their final eight games to almost sneak into the playoffs. A similar performance this time around is sure to guarantee Punjab Kings a first playoffs spot since 2014.
Punjab Kings vs Rajasthan Royals
Sunrisers Hyderabad vs Punjab Kings
Mumbai Indians vs Punjab Kings
Kolkata Knight Riders vs Punjab Kings
Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Punjab Kings
Chennai Super Kings vs Punjab Kings