Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants Want to Seal IPL Play-Off Berth

On a slippery slope after consecutive losses, Gujarat Titans need their batters to fire when they take on the high-flying Lucknow Super Giants as both teams look to close out the IPL playoffs on Tuesday. The two newcomers have a dream run in their first season.

While Gujarat led the points list for most of the competition, Lucknow went ahead of them to take the top spot. The Gujarat squad’s winning streak came to an end last week with consecutive losses to Punjab Kings and Mumbai Indians.

Both teams have 16 points from 11 matches each and a win for either one will confirm passage to the next stage.

LSG, who have won their last four matches, would be confident as they head into the game with a morale-boosting 75-run victory over Kolkata Knight Riders.

KL Rahul led from the front and the opener is the second highest scorer in the tournament, with 451 runs from 11 games with two hundred and as many fifties.

The team relied heavily on him to get the job done with the bat. But players like Quinton de Kock and Deepak Hooda have taken on more responsibility in recent games, which will certainly take the pressure off Rahul.

Their bowling unit has done well. While LSG was able to defend 153 against the Punjab Kings, they polish KKR for just 101, with pacesetters Avesh Khan and Jason Holder proving too hot for the former champions.

Pacers Mohsin Khan (5.35) and Dushmantha Chameera (7.90) from Sri Lanka won economically, as did Krunal Pandya (6.64), while Ravi Bishnoi (8.23) and Avesh (8.14) slightly were expensive. But the bowling unit has often found a way to cross the line.

Gujarat’s stellar performance in the IPL can be attributed to their ability to bounce back from difficult situations. They had several players winning games for them but that wasn’t the case against MI when they failed to get nine runs over to the last one in what should have been an easy chase.

The batting division should be more consistent. The highest order batters failed to take their innings deep.

Shubman Gill has endured a hot and cold season while Wriddhiman Saha has shown good intentions.

Skipper Pandya, David Miller and Rahul Tewatia have also been looking bad lately and need to get back into the groove at the business end of the tournament.

Gujarat has a deadly bowling attack, dotted with world-class bowlers such as Mohammed Shami, Lockie Ferguson and Rashid Khan.

But Shami has not been able to live up to expectations lately. The senior India pacer has conceded 124 runs while taking just two wickets in the last three matches.

However, he can wreak havoc with the new ball, while Ferguson’s ability to generate extra speed is a concern for any batting formation.

Rashid remains frugal, but the star Afghan spinner will crave more wickets.

The teams (out): Gujarat Titans: Hardik Pandya (c), Abhinav Manohar, David Miller, Gurkeerat Singh, B Sai Sudharsan, Shubman Gill, Rahul Tewatia, Vijay Shankar, Matthew Wade, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Wriddhiman Saha, Alzarri Joseph, Darshan Nalkande, Lockie Ferguson, Mohammed Shami, Noor Ahmad, Pradeep Sangwan, Rashid Khan, Ravisrinivasan Sai Kishore, Varun Aaron, Yash Dayal.

Lucknow Super Giants: KL Rahul (c), Manan Vohra, Evin Lewis, Manish Pandey, Quinton De Kock, Ravi Bishnoi, Dushmantha Chameera, Mohsin Khan, Mayank Yadav, Ankit Rajpoot, Avesh Khan, Andrew Tye, Marcus Stoinis, Kyle Mayers, Karan Sharma, Krishnappa Gowtham, Ayush Badoni, Deepak Hooda, Krunal Pandya. Jason Holder.

(This story was not edited by NDTV staff and was generated automatically from a syndicated feed.)

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