Delhi Capitals will square off with Kolkata Knight Riders in the second qualifier of the IPL 2021 in Sharjah. While the Rishabh Pant-led side is going for its maiden IPL trophy, the Kolkata camp has won it twice under Gautam Gambhir, who had led them to two IPL titles in a space of three years in 2012 and 2014. The winner of the contest will spring up as Chennai Super Kings' rivals for the title clash on Friday.
Kolkata have relied on their batting order including batting sensation Venkatesh Iyer. Rahul Tripathi, Shubman Gill and Nitish Rana have chipped in with vital knocks. Their bowling attack comprises Lockie Ferguson, Shivam Mavi, Varun Chakravarthy, and Sunil Narine. Eoin Morgan's men notched up a four-wicket win over Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Eliminator with Narine (4/21) weaving his magic and sending Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers and Glenn Maxwell back to the dugout. Chasing 139, KKR got home with two balls to spare.
Delhi, on the other hand, were jolted by Chennai Super Kings in Qualifier 1. R Ashwin and Kagiso Rabada's bowling form is a concern for the table-toppers of this season. They drafted Tom Curran in place of Ripal Patel in Qualifier 1 and he is likely to play against Kolkata if Marcus Stoinis remains unavailable.
Let's take a look at what can be the strongest Dream 11 team in DC vs KKR Qualifier 2 match:
Wicket-keeper (Rishabh Pant)
Rishabh Pant has been consistently scoring runs for the past few games for Delhi Capitals and has the edge over Dinesh Karthik. Pant has over 400 runs this season in 15 matches at an impressive average of 37.54.
Batters (Shreyas Iyer, Prithvi Shaw, Shubman Gill)
Shreyas Iyer has been consistently firing runs in the middle-order including a match-winning knock against Mumbai Indians. He is likely to deliver if Shikhar Dhawan and Prithvi Shaw don't fire at the start. The Punjab opener is the second-leading run-scorer for Kolkata in this edition with 381 runs in 15 matches.
Shaw has notched up 60 against Chennai and 48 against Bangalore in his last two games, and is also a strong candidate in the Orange Cap race.
All-rounders (Shakib Al Hasan, Axar Patel, Sunil Narine, Venkatesh Iyer)
The induction of Shakib Al Hasan has given a new dimension to the Kolkata outfit. Venkatesh Iyer has been the star performer in the second leg for KKR. In eight games so far, the left-hander has scored 265 runs including two half-centuries. He has also picked three wickets. Sunil Narine will be beaming with confidence after working his magic against Bangalore and steering Kolkata to the Qualifier.
Bowlers (R Ashwin, Lockie Ferguson, Varun Chakravarthy)
Just like Narine, Ashwin could also leave his mark on the Sharjah surface. He has picked just five wickets this season and would like to finish the IPL 2021 on a high before the World T20. "Mystery spinner" Varun Chakravarthy can also spin out Delhi, having taken 15 scalps so far and being his side's leading wicket-taker. Pacer Lockie Ferguson is third on the list behind Chakravarthy and Narine (14 wickets) with 12 plucks.
The Sharjah surface has mostly required batters to spend time on it before going gung-ho but failing to settle down could only bring you more trouble. One can expect the side winning the toss to bat first and put on a sizeable total.
It's expected to be a clear day in Sharjah with periodic clouds. The temperature will be fluctuating around 35 degrees in the evening. The teams are expected no respite from the heatwave while rain interruption is not a possibility.
You can see the IPL 2021 DC vs KKR Live Streaming Online on Hotstar and JIOTV, and TV Telecast on Star Sports 1, Star Sports 3, and Star Sports HD channels.