Kolkata Knight Riders face Mumbai Indians in the battle of the top two teams in IPL 2017. KKR are currently second, trailing MI by two points in the Indian Premier League standings but a win at the Eden Gardens on Saturday night may see them leapfrog their opponents to top place albeit on net run-rate. Rising Pune Supergiant, who lost to Delhi Daredevils on Friday, also have 16 points but their chances of finishing top seems now to be unlikely prospect courtesy a poor run-rate. Kolkata are coming at the back of a loss to Kings XI Punjab and will look to return to winning ways and get back some momentum. Mumbai too have lost their previous two games and ahead of the play-offs will look to get back into rhythm.
Top 5 picks for KKR vs MI match at Eden Gardens in Kolkata:
Chris Lynn: The Australian has been arguably the biggest impact player this season. Injury had sidelined him from much of the tournament after making a whirlwind start but he has returned just at the right time for KKR. Lynn has the ability to tear into any bowling attack in the world and once he gets going, it is extremely hard to stop him. The greatest facet to his game is that if he stays there for a period of time, KKR are guaranteed runs at a super fast rate. 259 runs from four matches at a strike rate of 186.33, just goes on to show the sort of form he is in.
Sunil Narine: Another ace up KKR's sleeve is the West Indian spinner, who now should be categorised as an all-rounder. Before this season, one could have bet a house on Narine getting the job done with the ball. However, following a change in his bowling action, the West Indian has not had the same impact with the ball as he had previously but he has found a way to bridge that gap. Narine has done wonders after being promoted to the opener's position and while it might not work all the time but when it does, carnage ensues.
Gautam Gambhir: The KKR captain is still in the running in the 'Orange Cap' competition and has been in wonderful form. He has led from the front for his team and played a massive part in their performance and results this season. He took the back seat when Lynn and Narine were running riot in Bengaluru but that has what most of his performances have been this season. He has put in some great performances this season but has gone under the radar courtesy some phenomenal innings by other players. Ganbhir, however, without complaining has gone about doing his job nonchalantly.
Kieron Pollard: The big hitting West Indian might not have carried Mumbai to victory in their previous two matches but there is little doubt that he is well and truly back in form. Pollard has not been as destructive as in earlier seasons but nevertheless has played more mature innings for Mumbai this season. He almost took Mumbai ti an unlikely win against Punjab in their previous match but fell seven runs shirt in the record chase.
Lendl Simmons: The West Indian batsman has come in to replace Englishman Jos Buttler and made instant impact. Buttler had done well for Mumbai this season but had return to national duties. In came Simmons and hit the ground running almost immediately. Simmons has played three matches so far, scoring 126 runs at an average of 42 and a strike rate of 157.50 and once again will look to provide a good start to Mumbai against Kolkata.