New Delhi. Mohali’s ground and the first date of April.. when the first double header match of IPL 2023 will be played. Shikhar Dhawan’s Punjab Kings and Nitish Rana’s Kolkata Knight Riders will be face to face. The challenge is huge for both the captains as Dhawan and Rana will have to justify the management’s decision. Actually Dhawan has got the captaincy of Punjab this season. While Rana was also handed over the command of KKR due to Shreyas Iyer’s injury in the past.
In such a situation, there is a big challenge in front of both the captains. Talking about both the teams, Punjab is looking for its first title. She has reached the finals only once so far. In 2014, it was KKR who broke Punjab’s dream of becoming champions by defeating them in the final.
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Bad season for both
At the same time, KKR became the champion in 2012 and 2014. Whereas in 2021 she was runner up. Last season, KKR’s team was at the 7th position. While the Punjab team stood at the sixth position. In 2022, the performance of both the teams was very poor. In such a situation, both the teams are eyeing a fresh start with the new captain. Currently, both the teams are struggling with injuries this season.
Punjab had made an expensive purchase
Talking about Punjab, it tried to remove its past weaknesses. Last season, Punjab lacked an excellent all-rounder. In such a situation, for IPL 2023, he spent money to remove this weakness and made the biggest bid of Rs 18.50 crore on Sam Karan in the history of the league. Punjab became very strong with the arrival of Karan. At the same time, Sikandar Raza, who is running in amazing form, will also be seen in Punjab’s jersey this time.
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Ruckus in Dhawan’s team
At the same time, in bowling too, Punjab has Arshdeep Singh and Kagiso Rabada. The pairing of both was a super hit last season as well. Punjab’s bowling is very strong, but Dhawan’s headache is going to increase in the first match, because Rabada will not be able to play the first match. He is currently in South Africa and is busy in the ODI series. Apart from Rabada, Liam Livingston has also not got fitness clearance. Johnny Bairstow is also out due to injury. Matthew Short, who came in place of Bairstow in the first match, and Nathan Allison may get a chance in place of Rabada.
got the captain at the opportune moment
Talking about KKR, it got a big blow in the form of Iyer even before the league started. The team got a captain on the last occasion. Although Rana has been an important part of the team for a long time. In such a situation, he will not face much difficulty in handling the responsibility of captaincy. He is going to create havoc with the bat. Along with this, sometimes he turns the match with his bowling.
Hidden power in all-rounders
KKR’s full strength lies in its all-rounders. KKR has players like Andre Russell, Sunil Narine among the best all-rounders in the world. Shakib Al Hasan is also in form, who recently tore apart English and Irish bowlers. Although he will join the team late. Talking about bowling, KKR has two big names Tim Souri and Lockie Ferguson. Both KKR and Punjab have solid teams for this league. That is, the first collision of both is going to be tremendous.
PBKS Full Squad: Shikhar Dhawan, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Arshdeep Singh, Raj Bawa, Rahul Chahar, Sam Curran, Rishi Dhawan, Sikandar Raza, Nathan Ellis, Baltej Singh, Harpreet Brar, V Kaverappa, Mohit Rathi, Harpreet Singh, Prabhsimran Singh, M Shahrukh Khan, Jitesh Sharma, Shivam Singh, Matthew Short, Atharva Tayde
KKR Full Squad,
Nitish Rana (Captain), Shakib Al Hasan, Tim Southee, Andre Russell, Lockie Ferguson, Venkatesh Iyer, Vaibhav Arora, Harshit Rana, N Jagadishan, Kulwant Khejroliya, Liton Das, Mandeep Singh, Sunil Narine, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Umesh Yadav, Shardul Thakur, Varun Chakraborty, Anukul Roy, Rinku Singh, Suyash Sharma, David Wise.