As we reached the halfway point of the group stage it looked as though KKR would progress serenely through to the play offs while we would be saying goodbye to Rajasthan. At one stage, the Royals were bottom of the table but three wins see Ajinkya Rahane’s men join Kolkata on 12 points.
Suddenly, we have a crucial fixture on our hands as the two sides meet at Eden Gardens on Tuesday so let’s see if we can pick out some winners.
Based on current form this could be a tight call but the bookmakers have picked their clear favourites. Kolkata Knight Riders lead the result betting by some margin at 1.62 with Betfair while Rajasthan Royals follow at 2.30 with Betfair once again.
The issue with those backing Rajasthan could come through a perceived lack of depth in their batting. Results have been transformed thanks to Jos Buttler who was promoted to open and has responded brilliantly with five straight half centuries. Meanwhile, D’Arcy Short and Sanju Samson in particular are out of form and it could be a case of get Buttler early and win the game.
The Knight Riders made the highest score of IPL 11 so far when they compiled a huge 245/6 to overcome Kings XI on Saturday. KKR look in prime form and while Buttler is certainly a key wicket, Kolkata’s batters should have enough to convert the profit on their own ground.
Match Odds Summary: Kolkata Knight Riders: 1.62 (Betfair – Editor’s Pick), Rajasthan Royals 2.30 (Betfair).
The bookmakers have been a little slow to react to the weekend’s games with only Betfair offering odds with just under 24 hours before this game starts on Tuesday. In the Knight Riders’ top batsman betting, Chris Lynn starts as favourite at 3.40 with Robin Uthappa following at 4.50.
Sunil Narine smashed his way to 75 from just 36 balls on Saturday so there will be definite interest in the pinch hitting opener at 5.00 while other Kolkata options include Nitish Rana at 5.50, Dinesh Karthik at 7.50 and Andre Russell at 9.00 – all with Betfair.
For the Rajasthan Royals, Jos Buttler’s stunning run of form sees him start as the new favourite to top score against KKR at 3.10 with D’Arcy Short at 3.75 and Ajinkya Rahane at 4.00. Ben Stokes was also promoted to good effect against Mumbai and he looks generous at 6.00 while Sanju Samson may look short in contrast at 4.50. Once again, all of those prices are with Betfair.
Jos Buttler’s run has to end sometime and an early dismissal could leave the Royals’ market wide open. It’s not been the best of IPLs for Ajinkya Rahane but he’s due and ready to step up to cover if Buttler does fail.
Top Batsman Odds Summary: Lynn 3.40 (Betfair), Uthappa 4.50 (Betfair), Narine 5.00 (Betfair), Rana 5.50 (Betfair), Karthik 7.50 (Betfair), Russell 9.00 (Betfair).
Rajasthan Royals: Buttler 3.10 (Betfair), Short 3.75 (Betfair), Rahane 4.00 (Betfair – Editor’s Pick), Samson 4.50 (Betfair), Stokes 6.00 (Betfair).
Other Side Bets
Once again, the prices in the Highest Opening Partnership bet look interesting and this is a market that we’ve been focussing on in recent games. The Buttler factor makes Rajasthan favourites here at 1.72 with Betfair while the Knight Riders hold the value at 2.10 with Betfair once again.
Instead, we’ll finish with Rajasthan’s top bowler market where we think there is the opportunity for a nice profit. Jaydev Unadkat starts as favourite at 3.75 with Betfair but the pick is the impressive Jofra Archer who looks very generous at 4.33 with Betfair again.
Rajasthan Royals Top Bowler Odds Summary: Unadkat 3.75 (Betfair), Archer 4.33 (Betfair – Editor’s Pick), Kulkarni 4.50 (Betfair), Stokes 4.50 (Betfair), Gowtham 5.00 (Betfair).
Rajasthan’s bowlers will be under pressure at Eden Gardens and while Archer can give us a nice profit at that 4.33 price, we’re looking at KKR’s batters to continue some good form and win the match.