Kolkata Knight Riders v Titans, CLT20, Cape Town

Titans a win away from semi-finals

The Preview by George Binoy

October 20, 2012

Comments: 21 | Text size: A | A

Match facts

October 21, 2012
Start time 1730 local (1530 GMT)


Ethy Mbhalati picked up three wickets, Auckland Aces v Titans, Group A, Champions League T20, Durban, October 17, 2012
Ethy Mbhalati is fit to play for Titans © Getty Images
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Titans have every chance of making the semi-finals of the Champions League T20, having won two out of two games to earn eight points. Kolkata Knight Riders have none, after losing their first two matches and earning two points from a washout in a contest they had to win. Another Titans victory on Sunday will secure their progress; a Kolkata victory could keep the two semi-final berths for Group A vacant for a bit longer, which is what most of the other teams in the group will be rooting for.

By the time Titans and Kolkata take the field, however, the playing field in Group A would have changed significantly. If Delhi Daredevils beat Perth Scorchers in the first of Sunday's games, they will have taken top spot for the moment with ten points, while the BBL team will be knocked out of the tournament. Should Delhi lose, they will be level with Scorchers and Auckland on six points, with one game to play for each team.

Titans will have a fit squad to choose from after Ethy Mbhalati recovered from the hamstring strain he suffered against Auckland Aces.

Watch out for...

Newlands is Jacques Kallis' home ground but he's played only four Twenty20 matches there in the last eight years, scoring 75 runs at a strike rate of 91. Kallis hasn't scored a run in this season of the Champions League. He's faced only four deliveries, making a duck in one game and retiring hurt after being hit on the glove by Morne Morkel in another. With the ball, he's taken two wickets in ten overs at an economy-rate of 6.60. Kolkata's campaign has suffered because of the lack of contributions from Kallis. There isn't much at stake on Sunday apart from some statistics to salvage.

Unlike Kallis, Jacques Rudolph has had a superb two games for Titans, with two half-centuries and a strike-rate of 126.95. His runs came at the top of the order in Durban and Centurion and helped his team post strong totals in both matches. Another performance of similar impact will go a long way in helping Titans enter the final four.

Pitch and conditions

The forecast for Cape Town is not good on Sunday with the chance of showers during the day predicted to be 70%.

Quotes

"Ethy was put through a rigorous fitness test by our medical team at Saturday morning's practice. This included bowling a full spell and he came through with flying colours."
Titans spokesperson Gerald Dros

George Binoy is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by Batmanian on (October 21, 2012, 15:43 GMT)

Note to CLT20 organisers... five team pools for two semis slots are likely to result in lots of dead and near-dead rubbers. Four three team pools for one SF spots, or for two QF spots, with proper seeding, would be much smarter... 3 India spots, 1 RSA, 1 Aus, 1 spot for a playoff between RSA and Aus runners up, 1 Pak, 1 Eng, 1 SL, 1 WI, 1 NZ, 1 playoff for Bang champ vs 4th IPL placing.

*In QF scenario at least, more likelihood of IPL teams getting through ($$$). *More proportionate sop to RSA and Aus (two teams each too many). *Bang league gets some representation. *Quicker and less boring.

Posted by   on (October 21, 2012, 15:02 GMT)

No point in going in with 7 batsmen for KKR ... They need to go with 6 batsmen and 5 bowlers ... My team :::: 1. Bisla 2. Gambhir 3. McCullum 4. Kallis 5. Tiwary 6. Das 7. Lee 8. Abdulla 9. Sangwan 10. Narine 11. Balaji ........ they need to open the bowling with Lee and Kallis so that the Indian medium pacers don't have to bowl during power plays ...

Posted by British_North_America on (October 21, 2012, 14:45 GMT)

Many Bangladeshis consider Indians as brothers because Bangladesh is an extended part of India.

Posted by warneneverchuck on (October 21, 2012, 13:17 GMT)

BD fans always sing abt shakin who is just a another player but can't blame them as he is the best player produced by them

Posted by British_North_America on (October 21, 2012, 12:56 GMT)

Listen Indians(Our brothers and countrymen) will not say Kallis is better than Tendulkar.If Tendulkar sometimes loses his strength due to age than how can Kallis be a evergreen player at the age of 37-38? Shakib is another Kallis type batsman who needs time to settle then hit boundaries but he always comes to the field when either 2-3 wickets fell quickly or 10-15 balls remaining.Then how can he do good?

Posted by Nipunblue on (October 21, 2012, 12:40 GMT)

@smith, who bothered u ? Shakib or BD? or the weather ?

Posted by Summer_Sport on (October 21, 2012, 12:07 GMT)

@sajjad.kernel Actually he's underrated because he plays for a weaker team but the important thing is he's better than you :P

Posted by   on (October 21, 2012, 11:06 GMT)

kolkata should play Shakib in this match cause they have nothing to lose,otherwise they will miss the support of all the bangladehi's .And also he is a quality player and when in form can take the fight to the opposition.

Posted by Abaa on (October 21, 2012, 10:43 GMT)

@ siponus2007 - What a preposterous statement ... Going by that logic, West Indies won last month's World T20 due to Andre Russell.

Posted by siponus2007 on (October 21, 2012, 10:29 GMT)

sajjid kernel bcz of sakib kkr wins the last year ipl , say somethigs what make sense , dont burst a guy who has been consistent permorer in world cricket last 5 to 6 years , if u wanna judge sakib by a one game than sachin would be a fluke too

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George BinoyClose
George Binoy Assistant Editor After a major in Economics and nine months in a financial research firm, George realised that equity, capital and the like were not for him. He decided that he wanted to be one of those lucky few who did what they love at work. Alas, his prodigious talent was never spotted and he had to reconcile himself to the fact that he would never earn his money playing cricket for his country, state or even district. He jumped at the opportunity to work for ESPNcricinfo and is now confident of mastering the art of office cricket
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