Two perennial under-achievers in the Indian Premier League (IPL) teams – Punjab Kings and Rajasthan Royals, will kick off their respective campaigns of the UAE leg of IPL 14 on Tuesday at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. Currently, Sanju Samson-led Rajasthan are placed at the fifth spot in the standings, and they will look to collect all points from this encounter to move ahead towards securing a play-offs berth.
On the other hand, Punjab managed to win just three games in the eight games they played in the first leg in India. KL Rahul and Co. sit at the the sixth position on the table and the team will have to aim for more consistency.
Ahead of the clash, here we take a look at the other factors that could affect this match:
Pitch report: The surface at the Dubai International Stadium is generally a neutral one, but gets slight slower as the game progresses. A 160-plus score will be a good total to defend. The average first innings total on this venue is 158 and it comes down to 144 for IPL matches. Captains winning the toss usually opt to field first as the teams chasing have won 54 out of 93 games played here.
Weather: The temperature of Dubai will hover around 30-31 degree Celsius. There is no probability of rain or thunderstorms according to accuweather.com. Winds speeds at the venue will be around 20 km/h. Dew could also play a factor in the second half of the match.
T20 records at Dubai at this venue:
Total T20 games played: 94 (Batting first won 38 games, batting second won: 54 games)
Highest 1st innings score at this venue: 219/2
Lowest 1st innings score: 59
Highest successful run chase: 203/8