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>IPL 2010 4th Match Live Coverage – KKR v RCB, at Kolkata

>Live Coverage – KOL vs BAN, 4th match, Kolkata
Mar 14 (10:30 GMT, 16:00 IST) at Eden Gardens
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Match facts
Match Start time 04:00 India Time (1030 GMT)

Royal Challengers Bangalore are one of the most improved teams in the IPL. They were called, unkindly but perhaps not undeservedly, a ‘Test team’ in 2008. The results didn’t prove otherwise. They made big-buck signings for 2009 and turned around a miserable start to the season to reach the finals. They weren’t big spenders in 2010 but made smart buys and are among the favourites to reach the semi-finals this year. At full strength, Bangalore’s batting line-up has innovative batsmen capable of scoring in unusual areas, as well as seasoned players capable of tailoring their approach to varying demands. The energetic and evolved Indian contingent gives the line-up balance.

Kolkata are returning home triumphant after beating Deccan Chargers in the first game of the season in Mumbai. They started disastrously with both bat and ball but recovered to pull off a win that will help the ghosts of IPLs past seem less scary and more distant. And they are returning to the one venue in India where the loudest cheer hasn’t been for Sachin Tendulkar. When Ganguly leads his Knight Riders on the field for the first time at Eden in 2010, he will be boosted by his 12th man – the tens of thousands of faithful roaring for their reinstated captain and his charges. It’s the perfect stage for Kolkata to string together a second consecutive win.

Team Preview

On Friday, Jacques Kallis and Mark Boucher were in Port Elizabeth, leading the Warriors to victory in the Pro20 final. Several hours later, they were on a plane heading for India, due to arrive in Kolkata on Saturday night. Jet-lag and fatigue levels permitting, they could be part of Bangalore’s starting XI but it’s 50-50 at the moment. Their arrivals complete the South African contingent, which also includes Dale Steyn, Roelof van der Merwe, and Dillon du Preez. Apart from the Proteas, the only overseas player with Bangalore at the moment is Eoin Morgan, who is a certainty in the middle order. Kevin Pietersen will arrive after the Bangladesh Tests, Ross Taylor and Steven Smith after the Trans-Tasman Trophy, and Cameron White after the Sheffield Shield final.

Foreign ammunition aside, Bangalore have proven Indian performers in their ranks. Kumble and Rahul Dravid will be the corner stones of the bowling and batting, while the likes of Virat Kohli, Manish Pandey, Robin Uthappa and Praveen Kumar can also pull their weight.

Bangalore: 1 Jacques Kallis, 2 Robin Uthappa, 3 Rahul Dravid, 4 Virat Kohli, 5 Eoin Morgan, 6 Manish Pandey, 7 Mark Boucher (wk), 8 Roelof van der Merwe, 9 Praveen Kumar, 10 Anil Kumble (capt), 11 R Vinay Kumar.

Kolkata did not practise on Saturday, opting for much-needed rest on the day between two matches and travel. They didn’t play Ajit Agarkar because of a calf strain and, if he doesn’t recover, they could field the same XI once again. Kolkata will strive for another win with a less-than-full-strength squad, knowing that reinforcements will be on the way shortly. Shane Bond has finished his New Zealand duties for the summer and will arrive in time for the third game. Chris Gayle, who tweeted his delight at Kolkata’s win, has only one more ODI against Zimbabwe, and David Hussey will get here along with White after the Sheffield Shield final. They’ll have to wait until the end of March for Brendon McCullum.

Kolkata : 1 Manoj Tiwary, 2 Brad Hodge, 3 Sourav Ganguly (capt), 4 Cheteshwar Pujara, 5 Owais Shah, 6 Angelo Mathews, 7 Wriddhiman Saha (wk), 8 Laxmi Ratan Shukla, 9 Murali Kartik, 10 Charl Langeveldt, 11 Ishant Sharma.

Previously…

In 2008, Bangalore were annihilated by McCullum in the opening game of the IPL and went down by 140 runs. In the second game at Eden Gardens, Kolkata prevailed once again, by five wickets. Bangalore won both matches against Kolkata in 2009, by five and six wickets, in the final over.

In the spotlight

Eoin Morgan: Reverse-sweeps and pulls, shots powered with exaggerated bottom hand, enterprise, and a cool head under red hair. Bangalore acquired all of these qualities when they picked up Morgan for $220,000 in the auction. Like Owais Shah who launched his IPL career successfully on Friday, Morgan has a few weeks to prove he deserves a place in the XI even after Pietersen, White and Taylor arrive.

Charl Langeveldt v his countrymen: Bangalore have five South Africans in their squad. Six if you count Ray Jennings too. Langeveldt will be able to provide Kolkata with insight into their modus operandi. And vice versa. Langeveldt accounted for the sole South African in Deccan’s line-up, dismissing Gibbs. How many can he take out tomorrow?

Teams:

Bangalore Royal Challengers (From): Jacques Kallis, Robin Uthappa, Rahul Dravid, Virat Kohli, Eoin Morgan, Manish Pandey, Mark Boucher(w), Roelof van der Merwe, Praveen Kumar, Anil Kumble(c), Abhimanyu Mithun, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Dale Steyn, Balachandra Akhil, KP Appanna, Dillon du Preez, Shreevats Goswami, Vinay Kumar, Sridharan Sriram

Kolkata Knight Riders (From): Manoj Tiwary, Brad Hodge, Sourav Ganguly(c), Cheteshwar Pujara, Owais Shah, Angelo Mathews, Wriddhiman Saha(w), Laxmi Shukla, Murali Kartik, Charl Langeveldt, Ishant Sharma, Ganapathi Vignesh, Ajit Agarkar, Eklak Ahmid, Ajantha Mendis, Chirag Pathak, Varun Aaron, Ashok Dinda, Rohan Gavaskar, Iqbal Abdulla, Harshad Khadiwale

Preview by cricinfo Triumphant Kolkata begin home campaign

Preview by cricbuzzLive Coverage – KOL vs BAN, 4th match, Kolkata

March 14, 2010 Posted by | Bangalore Royal Challengers, Indian Premier League, IPL, IPL 2010, Kolkata Knight Riders, Match Preview, Royal Challengers Bangalore | Leave a comment

>IPL T20 Match Preview – Deccan, Kolkata miss overseas stars in opener

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Match facts

Friday, March 12
Start time 2000 (1430 GMT)

It’s the first IPL match of 60 matches: The defending champions taking on wooden-spoon winners, after a flashy opening ceremony, amid high security at a stadium neither calls home. What stakes does the first bout of IPL 2010 hold, when the contestants know they have 13 to follow? Not much in isolation, given the unpredictability of the format and the duration of the tournament, but Kolkata Knight Riders, who’ve won only nine out of 28 previous IPL matches during campaigns fraught with controversy, would love to hit the ground running.

Team

Kolkata have only six overseas players to choose from at the moment: Brad Hodge, Owais Shah, Ajantha Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Mashrafe Mortaza and Charl Langeveldt. The likes of Brendon McCullum, Chris Gayle, David Hussey and Shane Bond will join the squad only after their international commitments. It’s likely that Mendis and Mortaza will be the ones to miss out on the opening game. Ajit Agarkar did not train on the eve of the match because of a calf strain and is likely to sit out as well. Kolkata signed up an Under-19 player, Mandeep Singh, 48 hours ago and he is reportedly in their scheme of things.

Deccan
don’t have a choice regarding their overseas players for the first game. They have only four in the squad so Adam Gilchrist, Herschelle Gibbs, Andrew Symonds and Chaminda Vaas will play. It’s a bit of a concern since Gilchrist, Symonds and Vaas have been out of competitive cricket while Gibbs has been struggling for form with South Africa. They have a strong Indian contingent, though, with VVS Laxman and Rohit Sharma bolstering the batting, and RP Singh and Pragyan Ojha leading the bowling.

Previously…

Kolkata beat Deccan in both matches during the 2008 season: by five wickets at home and by 23 runs away. Deccan, however, won both matches during the 2009 season in South Africa, beating Kolkata by eight and six wickets.

In the spotlight

Charl Langeveldt v Deccan’s openers: Adam Gilchrist has spent another year without playing much competitive cricket and his opening partner Gibbs isn’t in prime form anymore. In Langeveldt, Kolkata possess a clever bowler capable of taking crucial wickets and Gilchrist’s will be the prize scalp. Langeveldt played only one game last season so, if given an opportunity tomorrow, he’ll be keen to stake his claim before Shane Bond arrives.

Owais Shah: Kolkata acquired Shah from Delhi this season, in exchange for Moises Henriques, to bolster a batting line-up that is missing McCullum, Gayle and Hussey during the early stages. Shah spent the entire season on the sidelines for Delhi in 2009 so he’ll be desperate to make an impact in his first IPL opportunity. Those who watched his 72 off 48 balls in an ODI in Bangalore, and his 98 against South Africa in the Champions Trophy will know what damage Shah can cause with his innovative technique.

March 12, 2010 Posted by | Deccan Chargers, IPL 2010, Kolkata Knight Riders, Match Preview | Leave a comment

>Match Preview – Weakened England should still be too strong

>Big Picture
It’s been so far, so good for England in Bangladesh, albeit with the occasional fright along the way in the one-day series and a troublesome list of injuries to their quick bowlers. Even though their strike power has been reduced they should still have too much class for the home side over this short series, but it’s

March 12, 2010 Posted by | Bangladesh, England, Match Preview, Test | Leave a comment