The Kolkata team will be hosting Bangalore in the league stage encounter of the Indian Playerzpot League 2023. This will be the second round of league fixtures for both sides and will be played at Eden Gardens on March 6. Kolkata will be looking to bounce back from a loss they incurred from Punjab but that was unlucky as DLS came to play a role after the rain hampered the playing conditions.
Meanwhile, Bangalore will be feeling pretty good about themselves after their comfortable win against Mumbai in their opener. Kolkata has a major absentee in S. Iyer who was ruled out injured ahead of the season and are currently under the captaincy of N. Rana. The head-to-head results are pretty even here with a total of 30 matches played between the two teams, Bangalore has 14 wins while Kolkata with a slight edge has 16 wins to their name.
Bangalore will be feeling good about themselves as their opening pair of V. Kohli and F. Du Plessis have started well. Where Kolkata will be looking for inspiration and a good result playing in home advantage.
Players to watch out for
N. Rana (Kolkata)
The captain of the Kolkata team is under the pressure to perform and he himself has backed him in that sense ahead of the season. With just 24 runs to show in the first innings perhaps it was not what was expected of him but playing at home will be a morale booster for him. He has had a consistent track record of scoring 300-plus runs but this time around he will have to notch up a better number to guide Kolkata to a better outcome.
F. Du Plessis (Bangalore)
Bangalore has got a leadership role at Bangalore since he moved from Chennai. Du Plessis is known for his fearless approach and for hitting the ball out of the park. The opener against Mumbai did show signs that he is hungry this season and will be looking to notch up greater numbers this season. He score 73 runs which were crucial for his team’s win vs Mumbai, having started well, the captain for Bangalore will be eyeing yet another win for the campaign and building on the good start.
V. Kohli (Bangalore)
Talk about the focal point of the Bangalore team over the years only one name pops up. V. Kohli is the GOAT for Bangalore, and with a record 6706 runs highest in the tournament’s history he does carry a lot of success and experience with him. A huge boost for Banglore is that he has started on a positive note this season and already scored 82 in his first knock vs Mumbai. Chasing the long eluded trophy, Kohli will try his best this season that he leaves no stone unturned on an individual level.
K. Sharma (Bangalore)
Bangalore did need a good spin bowling option ever since they lost Y. Chahal to Rajasthan. Well, from the looks of it, they have found their new spin maestro in K. Sharma. Bangalore bagged him at the auction and by the looks of his first performance against Mumbai, he looks like a good fit. The leg spinner kept a lid on the Mumbai batters especially the heavy hitters who came in deep and thus prevented any leakage of runs. Considering this year’s tournament will see different pitch conditions, having a spinner would be an advantage for Banglore and K. Sharma is a good asset to have.
Predicted Playing X1
Kolkata: M. Singh, R. Gurbaz [WK], A. Roy, V. Iyer, N. Rana [C], R. Singh, A. Russell, S. Thakur, S. Narine, T. Southee, U. Yadav
Bangalore: V. Kohli, F. Du Plessis [C], D. Karthik [WK], G. Maxwell, M. Bracewell, S. Ahmed, H. Patel, A. Deep, R. Topley, M. Siraj, K. Sharma
Fantasy X1 Picks
Wicketkeeper – D. Karthik
Batters – V. Kohli, N, Rana, R. Singh, G. Maxwell
All-rounder – A. Russell, S. Ahmed
Bowlers – M. Siraj, K. Sharma, H. Patel, T. Southee
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