Our boys will look to quickly bounce back against Rajasthan Royals (RR) in our final league match of TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 on Friday, May 19.
After a narrow defeat against Delhi Capitals (DC), our team is in a tough situation. We need to register a big win over RR to keep our hopes alive for the playoffs.
If we win our final home match at the scenic Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) Stadium in Dharamshala, our boys will finish the league phase with 14 points.
Apart from winning with a huge margin on Friday, we are also dependent on several other results to go our way to finish in the top four on the points table.
On the other hand, the Royals have managed just a solitary win in their last five matches. With six wins and seven losses this season, RR are placed sixth in the standings.
Just like us, RR needs to win their final league match to remain in contention for the playoffs.
Nail-Biting Win In Reverse Fixture:
Our boys will take confidence from the thrilling five-run win over RR in our previous meeting at the Barsapara Cricket Stadium in Guwahati earlier this season.
Captain Shikhar Dhawan’s unbeaten 86 off 56 balls and Prabhsimran Singh’s 34-ball 60 helped us post 197/4 in our 20 overs. Later, Nathan Ellis’ four-wicket haul restricted RR to 192/7 in their allotted overs.
We will aim to complete a season double against the Royals on Friday.
What To Expect:
Over 400 runs were scored when PBKS and DC locked horns at the HPCA Stadium. We anticipate another high-scoring encounter against RR in Dharamshala.
The pitch is expected to assist the pacers early on. Batters will also get value for their shots at this small ground.
Toss-winning captains have opted to field in seven of the last 10 fixtures at this venue.
Players To Watch Out For:
Our hard-hitting batter, Liam Livingstone, almost pulled off a miraculous chase against DC on Wednesday. Chasing a target of 214, the 29-year-old slammed 94 runs off 48 balls to keep us in the hunt. His scintillating knock was laced with five fours and nine maximums. Livingstone will look to continue his brilliant form in our final league match.
Our swashbuckling wicketkeeper-batter, Jitesh Sharma, is just one run away from completing 500 runs in the TATA IPL. Jitesh has been impressive for us this season. He has scored 265 runs in 13 innings at a strike rate of 155.88. Having missed out against DC, Jitesh will aim to end the league phase on a high note.
Arshdeep Singh vs Yashasvi Jaiswal:
The face-off between Arshdeep Singh and in-form Yashasvi Jaiswal could play a key role in Dharamshala. Arshdeep has troubled Yashasvi in the TATA IPL, having bagged his wicket twice in three innings. On the other hand, Yashasvi has managed just six runs off the eight deliveries bowled by Arshdeep.
Shikhar Dhawan vs Yuzvendra Chahal:
Our talismanic skipper, Shikhar Dhawan, has a great record against leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal in the TATA IPL. The southpaw has scored 106 runs in 11 innings against Chahal. However, Dhawan has been dismissed only thrice by the leg-spinner so far. Considering their head-to-head record, this could be a significant battle in Friday’s encounter.
Sher Squad, believe in our boys! We need your support in Dharamshala.