Match factsTuesday, May 20, 2008
Start time 20.00 (local), 14.30 (GMT)
The Big PictureDespite a loss in the key game against the Chennai Super Kings, the Kolkata Knight Riders are still in the running for a place in the semi-finals. They'll need to win all three remaining games but even that won't assure them a top-four slot. Alternatively, a loss will diminish their chances but they could still make the cut with 14 points, if other results go their way.
What makes the task harder is Shoaib Akhtar's knee injury and an unforgiving schedule. Also, for a team that is yet to prove it can compete against the top teams, two of their three remaining games are against the most formidable sides of the tournament - Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab. Kolkata's main bugbear remains their inconsistent batting, with the troubles starting at the top - seven different combinations in 11 games have yielded less than 20 runs an innings.
With all their departments firing and comfortably perched at the top of the table, the Rajasthan Royals have no such concerns. A win against Kolkata will guarantee a spot in the final four, and with it an opportunity to give some of their top players a break in the remaining three league games.
Tournament positionKolkata Knight Riders: P11, W5, L6, NRR -0.026
Rajasthan Royals: P10, W8, L2, NRR +0.876
Form (last five matches, most recent first)Kolkata Knight Riders: LLWWW
Rajasthan Royals: WWWLW
Watch out for
Team newsIf Shoaib's knee injury doesn't heal in time, Umar Gul is likely to get a look in after missing three games. While the batting continues to struggle, a lack of quality alternatives could see Kolkata go in with the same batsmen.
Kolkata Knight Riders (probable): Salman Butt, Mohammad Hafeez, Sourav Ganguly (capt), Debabrata Das, David Hussey, Laxmi Shukla, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ajit Agarkar, Ishant Sharma, Ashok Dinda, Umar Gul
Unless Rajasthan want to give some of their regulars a rest, they could go in with the same XI that clinically dismantled Bangalore on Saturday.
Rajasthan Royals (probable): Graeme Smith, Swapnil Asnodkar, Shane Watson, Yusuf Pathan, Mohammad Kaif, Ravindra Jadeja, Shane Warne (capt), Sohail Tanvir, Mahesh Rawat (wk), Siddharth Trivedi, Munaf Patel
Stats and trivia
Quotes"He came to the tournament under-prepared. Here, he has given his 100%. But his knee is a problem now. We will monitor him for the next couple of days to see when he can play."
John Buchanan, the Kolkata coach, provides the latest on Shoaib's injury
Siddarth Ravindran is an editorial assistant at Cricinfo