Lucknow Super Giants Vs Kolkata Knight Riders, IPL 2024: Match 54 Preview

Lucknow Super Giants have placed just one rung below KKR at number three with 12 points from 10 matches with six wins and four defeats so far in the 2024 Indian Premier League season

Captains of Kolkata Knight Riders and Lucknow Super Giants, Shreyas Iyer (first from left) and KL Rahul, respectively. Photo: BCCI

Lucknow Super Giants will have to bring their ‘A’ game forward to prevail against a dominant Kolkata Knight Riders when the two teams, marching towards IPL playoffs, clash here on Sunday. (Full Coverage)

With an all-round win by 24 runs over Mumbai Indians propelling the second-placed KKR to 14 points — one more step closer to qualification — the pressure will be on KL Rahul's LSG to find a way past the threat that Shreyas Iyer's side poses.

Lucknow Super Giants are placed just one rung below KKR at number three with 12 points from 10 matches with six wins and four defeats.

With a rampant Sunrisers Hyderabad (12 points) hot on heir heels at fourth, followed by the dangerous Chennai Super Kings (10 points) and Delhi Capitals (10 points) on the points table, LSG will be under pressure to avoid getting into a mid-table battle as the race for the final-four has intensified.

LSG were far from convincing in their previous assignment at Ekana Stadium here as they were made to work hard in a modest 145-run chase by Mumbai Indians, winning by just four wickets in the last over.

Skipper Rahul and all-rounder Marcus Stoinis have been the key players for LSG and it remains to be seen if South Africa veteran Quinton de Kock is brought back in place of young Arshin Kulkarni, who opened the innings in the last game.

Even though he has gone without a fifty since the first game, Nicholas Pooran has consistently notched up crucial scores but LSG’s overall finishing skills is under question following their struggles against Mumbai Indians.

LSG seemed to have made heavy weather towards the end giving MI a real sniff by losing wickets in a flurry and completing their modest chase with some stutter.

Ayush Badoni has had a subdued run in this IPL and the uncapped Indian player would be keen to shrug off the rustiness.

LSG's bowlers will also face a stern test with none of them making a real dent with individual brilliance in this IPL. LSG are also likely to be without express pacer Mayank Yadav.

Having lost only three of their 11 matches so far, it has taken something out of the ordinary to stop KKR in their tracks. CSK used a spin-friendly surface to eke out a win in Chepauk, while RR’s all-round class helped them pip KKR in a high-scoring thriller.

If anything, KKR’s bowling woes were exposed when Punjab Kings recorded IPL's highest chase ever against them, but Iyer's side has emerged strongly from that setback with two impressive wins.

However, having trumped MI on a sluggish wicket which exposed their batting frailties, KKR will aim for a much improved performance with the bat.

For the second time in this IPL, KKR batters struggled when the ball did not come on to the bat and they were forced to change gears in order to build a strong target.

KKR slipped to 57 for five at one stage and ran the risk of being shot out for a paltry total, but Venkatesh Iyer (70) and Manish Pandey (42) came to the rescue with a fine 83-run stand.

Iyer and Pandey were forced to soak pressure, curb their attacking game and look to farm the strike to build a recovery path for their side before the bowlers carried out a perfect job to secure a 24-run win.

Teams (from):

Lucknow Super Giants: Quinton de Kock, KL Rahul (c & wk), Deepak Hooda, Ayush Badoni, Marcus Stoinis, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Krunal Pandya, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohsin Khan, Shamar Joseph, Yash Thakur, Manimaran Siddharth, Prerak Mankad, Arshad Khan, Krishnappa Gowtham, Amit Mishra, Kyle Mayers, Ashton Turner, Matt Henry, Naveen-ul-Haq, Devdutt Padikkal, Yudhvir Singh Charak, Mayank Yadav, Arshin Kulkarni.

Kolkata Knight Riders: Shreyas Iyer (c), KS Bharat (wk), Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Rinku Singh, Angkrish Raghuvanshi, Sherfane Rutherford, Manish Pandey, Andre Russell, Nitish Rana, Venkatesh Iyer, Anukul Roy, Ramandeep Singh, Varun Chakravarthy, Sunil Narine, Vaibhav Arora, Chetan Sakariya, Harshit Rana, Suyash Sharma, Mitchell Starc, Dushmantha Chameera, Sakib Hussain, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Gus Atkinson, Allah Ghazanfar, Phil Salt.

Match starts 7:30pm IST.