Kolkata Knight Riders captain Shreyas Iyer won the toss and elected to bowl against Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League clash on Monday at Brabourne Stadium, Mumbai. Kolkata, who have lost their last two matches, are desperate to return to winning ways against a strong Rajasthan side who also lost their last clash against Gujarat Titans.
The two-time IPL champions made a change in their XI from the last clash as Shivam Mavi returned to the side in place of Aman Khan who made his debut against SRH. While they give another chance to Australia limited-overs skipper Aaron Finch at the top by leaving out Ajinkya Rahane.
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Iyer cited one side shot-boundary among the reasons behind opting to bowl first against Rajasthan Royals.
“We’ll bowl first. The wicket looks amazing and hard. One side seems short and one is long, so that’s another reason why we want to chase. It’s something we thrive on. We just practise a lot in the nets, we’ve seen the videos and have had chats in the meetings. Important to execute what we’ve discussed in the meetings. We’ve got one change - Shivam Mavi comes in for Aman Khan. They (overseas stars) have been excellent for KKR in recent years, it’s gonna be important for us that they perform but also the domestic players need to step up," Iyer said at the toss.
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Meanwhile, Rajasthan made three changes to their XI after losing their last match. Trent Boult, who missed their last match due to a niggle, returned to the XI in place of James Neesham. Obed McCoy also made his RR debut as he replaced Kuldeep Sen, while Karun Nair got a chance in place of Rassie van der Dussen.
“We would have also liked to bowl first, but need to be ready to do both. Our team is well set to do both. New venue for us, and we need to understand conditions quickly. Everyone has to contribute to whatever is the team’s requirement, the talk is always about understanding the situation and being smarter. Everyone is looking to contribute, but failures are accepted. We’re looking forward with a positive mindset. Three changes - Karun Nair, Obed McCoy and Trent Boult come in; Rassie, Kuldeep and Neesham are out," Samson said at the toss.
Rajasthan Royals (Playing XI): Jos Buttler, Devdutt Padikkal, Sanju Samson(w/c), Karun Nair, Shimron Hetmyer, Riyan Parag, Ravichandran Ashwin, Trent Boult, Prasidh Krishna, Obed McCoy, Yuzvendra Chahal
Kolkata Knight Riders (Playing XI): Venkatesh Iyer, Aaron Finch, Shreyas Iyer(c), Nitish Rana, Andre Russell, Sheldon Jackson(w), Sunil Narine, Pat Cummins, Shivam Mavi, Umesh Yadav, Varun Chakaravarthy
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