IPL 2023 Match 28 Condensed KKR Preview

Photo Cred: myKhel (L- David Warner, R- Nitish Rana)

While I am still happy overall with how the IPL season has been, I am starting to get a little disappointed in my own team. After a high-flying start, we seemed to have been humbled in the last two matches. Hopefully, in today’s game, my Kolkata Knight Riders can at least get back up to .500. KKR will face the Delhi Capitals (DC) in Match #28 in the IPL 2023 season, and I’m going to preview their matchup now. The Capitals’ horrific form continues, as they have yet to win a game this season. Meanwhile, KKR’s growth seems to have stopped, so they will be looking to get their season back on track.

IPL 2023 DC vs KKR Live streaming: When and where to watch Delhi Capitals vs Kolkata Knight Riders | News9live

Photo Cred: News9Live

In the standings, the Knight Riders have fallen behind the pack now. We are in seventh place with two wins and three losses. Despite this, KKR still has a positive NRR (+0.320). The Capitals are dead last with no wins and five losses, and having the league’s worst NRR is certainly doing them no favors in the race for the playoffs. This is the best match either for KKR to get going again or for DC to finally open their books and get their first win. As always with the pregame previews, here’s what you can expect: ideal playing XIs, any pre-match news/updates, and a little information on the opponents (like what to watch out for). Links to my entire preview and review series will be provided below.

Pre-match News & Updates

  1. There was an off-the-field issue for the Capitals: a loss of bats and equipment… Things like this can make it hard to focus on the next game. As if the Capitals already didn’t have enough to worry about…
  2. Everything seems relatively good health-wise. Khaleel Ahmed still has a hamstring strain, though.
  3. It seems like DC called up two players for trials, Bengal captain Abhimanyu Easwaran and former India U-19 captain Priyam Garg. If Ahmed’s injury is serious, could one of them take his place?

Delhi Capitals hit PANIC BUTTON, call up 'Unsold Duo' Abhimanyu Easwaran & Priyam Garg for trials, Nagarkoti RULED OUT, Follow IPL 2023 LIVE

Photo Cred: InsideSport.IN (Left: Easwaran, Middle: Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Right: Garg)

My KKR Predicted Playing XIs

  1. Rahmanullah Gurbaz (Overseas- Afghanistan) (Wicket-keeper)
  2. Jason Roy (Overseas- England)
  3. Narayan Jagadeesan
  4. Nitish Rana (Captain)
  5. Venkatesh Iyer
  6. Rinku Singh
  7. Andre Russell (Overseas- West Indies/Jamaica)
  8. Umesh Yadav
  9. Sunil Narine (Overseas- West Indies/Trinidad & Tobago)
  10. Varun Chakravarthy
  11. Suyash Sharma

Sunil Narine 'not that far behind' Andre Russell as an all-rounder: KKR CEO | Sports News,The Indian Express

Photo Cred: The Indian Express (L- Russell, R- Narine)

  1. Rahmanullah Gurbaz (Overseas- Afghanistan) (Wicket-keeper)
  2. Narayan Jagadeesan
  3. Nitish Rana (Captain)
  4. Venkatesh Iyer
  5. Rinku Singh
  6. Andre Russell (Overseas- West Indies/Jamaica)
  7. Umesh Yadav
  8. Sunil Narine (Overseas- West Indies/Trinidad & Tobago)
  9. Kulwant Khejroliya
  10. Varun Chakravarthy
  11. Suyash Sharma

IPL 2023 - Nitish Rana to lead KKR in place of injured Shreyas Iyer | ESPNcricinfo

Photo Cred: ESPNcricinfo (L- Rinku, R- Rana)

My Impact Player Possibility

Batter: Indian option- Aarya Desai, Overseas option- Jason Roy (England)/Litton Das (Bangladesh).

I’m going to eat my words again. If Suyash Sharma worked out so well for us, why not Desai? Mandeep Singh might have the experience but, who knows, maybe new players are the way to go! Besides, the KKR management surprised me once by letting Suyash play. I would not be surprised if they decided to hand Desai a debut sometime soon. Das stays as my Impact Player option, but only if Roy plays. However, there is a chance I could slot Das straight into the playing XI next game if Gurbaz has another slip-up.


Photo Cred: Kolkata Knight Riders

Seam Bowler: Indian options- Vaibhav Arora/Kulwant Khejroliya, Overseas option- David Wiese (Overseas- represents Namibia/born in and formerly represented South Africa).

Arora is the Indian seam option only if Khejroliya makes it to the XI. I am not even considering a Shardul Thakur impact sub appearance. Same deal with Lockie Ferguson, so Wiese slots back in as my overseas option here.

Spin Bowler: Indian option- Suyash Sharma.

Wash, rinse, repeat. Suyash > Anukul Roy. We don’t have any overseas spin options.

Kulwant Khejroliya, Vaibhav Arora and Andre Russell train at their home ground | ESPNcricinfo.com

Photo Cred: ESPNcricinfo (L- Khejroliya, M- Arora, R- Russell)

My Playing XI Reasoning

  1. I am getting really close to dropping both Gurbaz and Jagadeesan. In their three appearances together, there were two times when at least one of them went on to make somewhat of a contribution. Against the Mumbai Indians (MI), though, both failed: Gurbaz had a 12-ball 8 and Jagadeesan had a five-ball duck
    • For now, though, they manage to stick around, but this is their last opportunity to right the ship!
  2. My constants who I’m proud of are: Iyer, Rinku, and Russell (batting) and Chakravarthy, Umesh, and Suyash (bowling).
  3. The constants who I will have to live with but am still not completely disappointed by are Rana and Narine. Narine can never be dropped (unless we want a full Indian spin attack) and Rana is the captain. His captaincy has worked out quite well so far, so I’m looking at these two recent losses as minor bumps on the road.
  4. That means I will be replacing two players: Shardul Thakur and Lockie Ferguson.
  5. In my bat-first XI, I am not only bringing in England’s Jason Roy but am also slotting him up top with Gurbaz. I feel like a change is quite needed with our opening pair, so getting Roy in will be the best way to do it. Jagadeesan will be the first drop, or he could even be floated down the order.
  6. I think Suyash has done more than enough for KKR so far that I am willing to slot him in as a third spinner in both of my playing XIs! What an odd sight it is to see three spinners, but it’s been working for us so far, so why not reward him?
  7. In my bat-first XI, my Impact Player selection is Kulwant Khejroliya. As much as I want him to slot in directly, Suyash has just done way better than I could’ve expected. This is why our second Indian seam option (barring Iyer) will have to make his impact as a substitute instead.
  8. In my bowl-first XI, my Impact Player selection is Jason Roy. Roy and Khejroliya will just flip-flop for me.

IPL 2022: Rahmanullah Gurbaz Likely To Replace Jason Roy

Photo Cred: Spiel Times (L- Gurbaz, R- J. Roy)

KKR Player Unavailability

  1. Shreyas Iyer: Back surgery, ruled out of the tournament.
  2. Shakib Al Hasan (Overseas- Bangladesh): Opted out of the tournament.

The Opponent- Delhi Capitals

Who/What to Watch Out For
  1. Kuldeep Yadav. The former “spin twin” duo alongside Narine for us at KKR, Kuldeep’s career has taken off once again as it did while he played for us. Unfortunately for us, plans had changed, and we had pivoted to a mystery spinner in Varun Chakravarthy.
    • He’s been quite good for Delhi, picking up four wickets with an econ between 5.75 and 8.75.
    • He even got back into all Indian national sides after some time off during his KKR debacle.
  2. Axar Patel. The next players I am going to mention all have some drawbacks, however major or minor. Kuldeep is the only true DC player who has been rather spotless in his performances so far in 2023.
    • Axar has hit 129 runs in 78 balls in five games, including his maiden IPL 50. However, he did have a bad batting game included in this mix (a 6-ball 2).
      • His 165.38 SR is the best in his IPL career so far.
    • While he might’ve picked up only two wickets so far, he has been ok economically  well (8.07 overall).
  3. The bowling of two all-rounders. I’m talking about Lalit Yadav (6.50 econ, picked up a wicket) and Mitchell Marsh (three wickets for 8.13 econ). Their batting has left a lot to be desired, but at least Lalit has a valuable contribution (24-ball 38 with five 4s) in one game.
  4. The captain, David Warner. Warner has hit 228 runs in five games, which has included three 50s. However, unlike typical Warner fashion, he has not been able to have a good strike rate (116.92). That would be his second-worst SR in 13 seasons…
  5. Anrich Nortje. Nortje has been one of the world’s (and South Africa’s) best bowlers since 2019. He’s one of the fastest bowlers too (regularly hits 150 kph/93.2 mph) and bowls some mean bouncers as well. Nortje’s even clocked in speeds of 156.2 kph/97.1 mph and 154.3 kph/95.9 mph!
    • This season, he’s been 50-50 in his four appearances. He was rather expensive in the first two games (83 runs in eight overs, 10.38 econ), but he did have two wickets. After that, he’s been wicketless but he has settled down economically: 66 runs in eight overs, 8.25 econ.
    • However, surprisingly enough, he has made up for his bowling with his bat too. He’s had a 2-ball 4, a 3-ball 5, and a 14-ball 23 (his most notable batting contribution). That’s enough for me to move him up into this category from the honorable mentions!
  6. Manish Pandey. Pandey’s drawback is that his DC debut ended with a first-ball duck. However, he managed to bounce back from it to score 76 runs in 56 balls in the next two games.
Honorable Mentions
  1. Khaleel Ahmed and Chetan Sakariya. I combined these entries together to tie up the fact that both seamers have not featured for DC for quite some time. Ahmed has been injured, while Sakariya has been discarded.
    • Ahmed had a good two-wicket, 7.50-econ game in the first game of DC’s season. In the next game, he was brought in as the impact sub and picked up a wicket but had a 9.50 econ. Their third game was the last we’d see of Ahmed this season, and it was his worst game as well: two overs, 15.50 econ…
      • At 6’1″, he can leverage his height to hit the deck hard and also has pretty good swing. Being a left-armer, he will always be in high demand, as the IPL loves left-arm seamers.
    • Sakariya has only featured in one game for DC, their season debut. He picked up two wickets but he was very expensive (13.25 econ).
      • He is another left-armer but he uses variations in tactics to his strength.
  2. Rilee Rossouw. He’s been one of the best pure T20 hitters out there. How can a 159.79 T20I SR and a 144.68 T20 SR be replicated? He also averages 31-35 runs on average in this format. However, for some reason, he just has not managed to contribute in the IPL: 97 runs in eight games in three years (including a seven-year gap). At least his 2015 (140.00) and 2023 (133.33) SRs are ok, but his batting averages are awful…
    • This year, he’s only had 44 runs in 23 balls, but he had a 20-ball 30 on his debut.
  3. Aman Hakim Khan. It certainly seems like Delhi has put a lot of faith in this 26-year-old. They traded Shardul Thakur to us to get him before the 2023 IPL Auction, which already seemed like a big deal. Khan was the Capitals’ first impact substitute, then he made the team outright in the second game of their season. After missing the next two games, he was brought back against the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).
    • In these three games, he’s hit 30 runs in 23 balls. The potential is still there, as his overall SR is 130.43. He had a 10-ball 18 in his last game.

Photo Cred: Times of India (Kuldeep)                       Photo Cred: India Today (Warner)

Any Previous Player/Team History

  1. Several current Capitals were once former KKR players.
    • Aman Hakim Khan– As previously mentioned, he was traded to the Capitals at the start of the year. His debut season was in 2022, then he got to DC in 2023.
    • Kuldeep Yadav– Kuldeep spent a season (2012) for MI before joining KKR in 2014. He stayed with us until 2021, then he’s been with the Capitals since 2022.
      • He has been the player of the match in both matches (April 10, April 18) he’s faced KKR since joining Delhi.
      • I wish he had stayed with us… One of the many players who performed well after leaving us. Makes me wish we had utilized him better.
    • Kamlesh Nagarkoti– Nagarkoti started off with KKR in 2018 and was with us until 2021. He stayed with us despite being out for the season in 2019 due to a back injury. Like Kuldeep, he’s been with Delhi since 2022.
      • Just got the news that he’s been ruled out of the tournament due to, you guessed it, a back injury… Ok, so now it makes sense as to why DC brought in Easwaran and Garg. One of them (or someone else) might be able to come into the DC setup.
    • Anrich Nortje– This is a bit of cheating, as he never actually never represented KKR. Back when the South African Jacques Kallis was our head coach, he bought Nortje for 20 lakhs in the 2019 IPL Auction. However, he would get a shoulder injury and never got to play for us… He came in as a replacement player in 2020 and has been with DC since.
      • I had wished that we had at least retained him but it was not to be… Just imagine how potent our bowling attack would’ve been then!
    • Manish Pandey– Despite having represented three teams from 2008-13 (MI, RCB, and Pune Warriors India respectively), I feel like his best years were with us from 2014-17. Since his time with us, he spent four years (2018-21) with Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) before moving to the Lucknow Super Giants in 2022 and DC in 2023.
    • Rovman Powell– He was bought by us in 2017 and stayed with us until 2019, even though he never got a game. At that moment, he was meant to be a like-for-like replacement for Russell in case Russ had to miss any games. 2022 was when Delhi got him, and this time he was expected to be one of the four main overseas players.
      • It seems like he repaid the faith, as he hit 250 runs in his debut season with a 25.00 ave and 149.70 SR.
    • Ishant Sharma– Ishant was a first-time Knight Rider, by which I mean he played us during the debut season of the IPL. He was with us from 2008-10 before heading to the Deccan Chargers from 2011-12. Ishant would then move to SRH in 2013 and stay there until 2015. He would then spend 2016 with the Rising Pune Supergiants (RPS) and 2017 with the then-Kings XI Punjab (KXIP). While he had been with the Capitals from 2019 onward, he actually was released in 2022 and went unsold. Even in 2018, he went unsold. He was, however, bought back by DC in 2023.
  2. There are also many current Knight Riders who have played for DC.
    • Kulwant Khejroliya– Something that I missed in the last preview was that Khejroliya was actually brought into the Capitals’ side in 2021 as an injury replacement for Manimaran Siddharth (another former Knight Rider).
    • Mandeep Singh– As I have gone through his IPL history in the last preview, I will just mention that Mandeep played for DC last year before joining us this year.
    • Jason Roy– Roy represented both avatars of the Delhi franchise: 2018 with the Daredevils and 2020 with the Capitals.
    • Andre Russell– Russell has only ever represented two IPL franchises, the then-Daredevils from 2012-13 and KKR from 2014 onward.
      • Being a KKR fan from 2008 onward, I can’t imagine a world without Dre Russ on our squad, haha. The fact that he even spent two seasons with a team other than KKR still baffles me but, boy, am I glad he’s with us and not anywhere else!
      • Looking at his Daredevils statistics, he was rather expensive with the ball (229 runs in 23 overs, 9.96 econ, one wicket). As a batter, he hit 58 runs in seven matches at 14.5 ave and varying SRs (78.57 and 180.76).
    • Shardul Thakur– Thakur made his IPL debut with KXIP (2015-16), then he made his way to RPS in 2017. Afterwards, he managed to have a consistent stay with a team: four years from 2018-21 for the Chennai Super Kings. Like Mandeep, he represented DC last season.
      • He was also teammates with Ishant, it seems, from 2016-17.
    • Umesh Yadav– Like J. Roy, he too got to represent the Delhi franchise at two different stages: 2010-13 with the Daredevils and 2021 with the Capitals. This is also his second stint with the Knight Riders, as he went to Kolkata (2014-17) straight after this first Delhi stint. RCB bought him in 2018 and kept him until 2020. KKR got him back in 2022 after his second Delhi stint.
    • Shreyas Iyer– While he won’t play in this tournament, I do want to mention Shreyas’ name. Shreyas was formerly DC’s captain from 2018-21, having been with the team since 2015. KKR made him a big-money buy in 2022 for 12.25 Crores, and he regained his captaincy having lost it to Pant.
  3. Some more relations are possible here:
    1. Bangladesh vs. Bangladesh. If Mustafizur Rahman plays for DC and Litton Das plays for KKR, those two national teammates would get to face off against one another.
    2. The Bengal connection. Two DC players and their Director of Cricket have connections to the Bengal state team and the state of West Bengal.
      1. Mukesh Kumar: He might be born in Bihar but he represents Bengal domestically. It took him a while but his talents were finally noticed and DC splurged 5.5 Crores to get him in this auction.
      2. Abishek Porel: The 20-year-old is now Bengal’s wicket-keeper after the loss of former players Wriddhiman Saha (to Tripura) and Shreevats Goswami (to Mizoram). He was brought in as a replacement for the usual DC captain Rishabh Pant.
      3. Sourav Ganguly: Ganguly is not only a Bengali but is also a former KKR (2008-10) player as well. He was an advisor for DC in March 2019, then rejoined them this year.
        • Whatever his relation is with KKR, he is still and forever will be ‘Dada‘ for me! He’s my inspiration for getting into the great sport of cricket. It’s because of him that I, a person whose dominant hand is my right one, decided to bat left-handed. Just to mimic his greatness, just to have the feeling that I, as a fellow Bengali, can also be like Dada.
    3. The Delhi-born players. Our captain (Nitish Rana), Harshit Rana, and Suyash Sharma are all born and brought up in Delhi.

Photo Cred: The Indian Express (Pandey)                Photo Cred: Mid-Day (Thakur)

The Links to My KKR Preview & Review Series

  1. My Thoughts on the Kolkata Knight Riders for the IPL 2023 season (also includes the condensed preview of KKR vs. PBKS)
  2. IPL 2023 Match 2 Condensed Review- KKR vs. PBKS
  3. IPL 2023 Match 9 Condensed KKR Preview
  4. IPL 2023 Match 9 Condensed Review- KKR vs. RCB
  5. IPL 2023 Match 13 Condensed KKR Preview
  6. IPL 2023 Match 13 Condensed Review- KKR vs. GT
  7. IPL 2023 Match 19 Condensed KKR Preview
  8. IPL 2023 Match 19 Condensed Review- KKR vs. SRH
  9. IPL 2023 Match 22 Condensed KKR Preview
  10. IPL 2023 Match 22 Condensed Review- KKR vs. MI

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