Pune v Kolkata, IPL 2013, Pune May 8, 2013

Low stakes in battle of strugglers


Match facts

Thursday, May 9, 2013
Start time 2000 (1430GMT)

Big picture

In theory, Kolkata Knight Riders can pull off something short of a miracle. In theory, they can make it to fourth place and qualify for the playoffs. The operative words in both the sentences: 'in theory'.

Like Rajasthan Royals and Royal Challengers Bangalore, Knight Riders have been poor travelers this season but unlike the other two teams, they haven't capitalised on the home advantage. It's made for a dismal situation at a crucial stage in the points table and they go into the match against Pune Warriors with four wins in 12 games.

They need to win all their matches and then pray for some mutualism within the league, that will allow them to move to the fourth spot.

Two of their last four matches are against Warriors, a team that is trying to beat the ignominy of finishing among the last two spots in the table for the third successive year. With a regular shuffle in leadership, lack of good bowling at the death and inconsistency in the field, they've drifted to the bottom of the table and out of the competition.

Form guide

(most recent first)
Pune Warriors LLLLL
Kolkata Knight RidersLWLLW

Players to watch

Aaron Finch was finally given the captaincy of the side after a startling leadership roulette that did no good to the team. While he hasn't been able to helm a team pulling away in all directions, his own performance has been decent. As an opener, he's got the team off to good starts with Robin Uthappa, though the failure of the middle order has hampered the team. With the pressure off his back, he'll be hoping to upset Knight Riders' plans.

Given the lack of teeth in the pace attack, and Ryan McLaren's poor performance against Mumbai, Ryan ten Doeschate may get a look-in. The Netherlands allrounder hasn't played a single game this season and his inclusion will bring some depth to a weak middle order, while giving the captain an extra bowling option.

Stats and trivia

  • Yusuf Pathan is the most successful bowler for Knight Riders against Warriors. He has taken four wickets from three matches at an average of 14.50
  • Robin Uthappa needs 60 runs to reach 3000 T20 runs
  • Warriors have the worst record among teams in the IPL. Of the 42 matches they have played in the tournament so far, the team has won 10 and lost 31, with one match being abandoned


"I think from here it makes us a dangerous side. Teams will take us lightly and it gives us an extra bit of positivity than anything else. We are not going to sit and sulk about it."
Knight Riders' batsman Eoin Morgan adopts a positive approach to the side's few remaining games

Rachna Shetty is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on May 9, 2013, 15:11 GMT

    Pune Warriors since their inception haven't won more than 4 games in any edition of IPL. That is less than 25% win percentage. This year is even worde than that. A major overhaul of the team is due or like the Deccan Chargers, PWI needs to be dissolved and re-emerge under a new name and management. They owe that much to their ardent fans.

  • koteswara on May 9, 2013, 14:21 GMT

    Mr Morgan, Nobody is taking you for granted and working seriously on your team, thats why you are in the current position. Its not about others how they take you, its your team that should work on basics, get team combination right, pick players based on performance than popularism

  • Mayan on May 9, 2013, 14:03 GMT

    I have just 2 words for Kolkatta Knight Riders . . . "Bret Lee" The 2 or 3 games he played, surprise, surprise . . . Kolkatta won! One doesn't need to be a rocket scientist to understand why. He is their best bowler; I think better than Narine and as far as his batting is concerned, the Kolkatta top order can learn not a few things from him, among others the art of batting at an average strike rate of 170+ in this kind of professional T20 championship.

  • Dummy4 on May 9, 2013, 13:58 GMT

    I believe this year KKR missed its right combination, and some formless top players in the team and also the senior players doesn't take there job seriously.

    I know there is no or less chance to qualify to the semis, but finishing in a high not is all that matter i guess.

    PWI is a broken team with no leaders and full of out of form player. KKR can thrush them into pieces if they play best of their game.

    I think Tendo should be included in the team, he is nice batter and lovely medium pacer. that might be handy.

    I think pathan and das should warm the bench for this match, new recuits should get some chance in this series.

  • Dummy4 on May 9, 2013, 13:57 GMT

    Please play Rasool, everyone wants to see him play. First player from Kashmir to play IPl is a big thing. Most people don't know about him and IPL is the only way to for us to see him play. look how Samson is playing after given a chance. BCCI should pick Rasool and Samson for team India ASAP !!

  • Dummy4 on May 9, 2013, 13:54 GMT

    As both of them have been knocked out,probably the best thing they can do now is to give chances to benched players for preparation of next season.Even spectators want to see some new players in action. My KKR XI:Gautam Gambhir,Manvinder Bisla,Laxmi Ratan Shukla,Paras Dogra,Rajat Bhatia,Yusuf Pathan,Jacques Kallis,Brad Haddin,Sunil Narine,Sachitra senayake,Brett Lee,i.e. 4 batsmen,5 allrounders (Senanayke can bat) ,2 world class bowlers. My PWI line up:Aaron Finch,Robin Uthhapa,Udit Birla,Parvez Rasool,Luke Wright,Yuvraj Singh,Eklyava dwivedi,Raiphi Gomez,Wayne Parnell,Ajantha Mendis,Bhuvaneshwar Kumar

  • Dummy4 on May 9, 2013, 13:41 GMT

    lot said about pune wariors poor selection kkr have been no better. they keep on playing two foreign bowlers but do not improve on their batting - u need to play haddin and tendo in place of mclaren and may be kallis hes been struggling and by the way where is haddin? such a match winner not playing a game

  • Nadeem on May 9, 2013, 13:38 GMT

    Still hope kkr will play off best of luck @yusuf pathan @kkr

  • Ali on May 9, 2013, 9:16 GMT

    KKR just have to win this match by a good margin if that "theory" statement is true. Then they should rely on only one man, who should be ready and present, Shakib Al Hasan will take them through.

  • Ali on May 9, 2013, 8:26 GMT

    KKR is out of the tournament......enough said!!!!

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