Rahul, Livingstone, Lewis headline six-hitters showdown
Two teams with exceptional batting muscle will look to clamber out of the mid-table spots when they meet in Dubai
In the news
- Chris Morris may not be in South Africa's plans anymore but he remains a formidable force. He is the second-highest wicket-taker this IPL season (14) and while a huge proportion of them have come in the final overs (9), his combination of pace, bounce and hustle may be Royals' best bet to dismiss Gayle. Their T20 head-to-head reads: 58 runs in 61 balls and three dismissals.
- Rahul is usually the man to set Kings up for big scores but he also has excellent credentials as a finisher. And given his strike-rates against Royals' potential back-end bowlers - 185 against Morris and 161 against Mustafizur Rahman - he will once again want to bat right through the innings.
Stats that matter
- The average first-innings score over the 34 IPL matches that have taken place in Dubai is 166. Seamers have tended to thrive here, picking up 3.76 wickets an innings as opposed to just 1.64 by the spinners.
- Kings (57) and Royals (52) are among the top-three six-hitting teams this season. Royals have been especially destructive in the death, clearing the ropes a total of 20 times, the most by any line-up in the first part of IPL 2021.
- Livingstone is coming into the IPL having scored the most runs in the Hundred (348 in nine innings) at the best strike rate (178.46) with the most sixes (27)
- Mustafizur is a bit of an unsung hero at Royals. His economy rate from overs 17 to 20 is 8.81, which is among the best in the IPL. It's better than Jasprit Bumrah's (8.87)
Alagappan Muthu is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo