The 31st game of the IPL 2021 will feature a match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore.
The Knight Riders have struggled this season, winning only two games.
Meanwhile, the Royal Challengers have continued to dominate this season.
The two teams will square off at Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Zayed Stadium.
Pitch report and condition
During the previous IPL season, the wicket here appeared to be balanced for both batsmen and bowlers.
Fast bowlers can get decent movement, while spinners do well in the middle phase.
However, the surface here occasionally becomes two-paced, making life difficult for batters.
The temperature will be around 35 degrees Celsius for the upcoming game, with little chance of rain.
With the dew on the ground, teams tend to chase
It’s worth noting that the dew begins to fall on this venue as the game progresses. This facilitates pursuing the target. Notably, the chasing team has won six of the last seven matches at Sheikh Zayed Stadium.
IPL 2020: KKR’s performance at Sheikh Zayed Stadium
The Kolkata Knight Riders were defeated by the Mumbai Indians in their first match at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium.
They subsequently won three consecutive games before falling to MI again.
KKR defeated Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Super Over tie.
Following that, they were defeated by the RCB by an eight-wicket margin.
In a one-sided battle, KKR defeated Delhi Capitals in their last encounter in Abu Dhabi.
IPL 2020: RCB’s performance at Sheikh Zayed Stadium
Last year, the Virat Kohli-led RCB struggled at this venue in Abu Dhabi. They won their first two games against the Rajasthan Royals and the Kolkata Knight Riders, respectively. The RCB subsequently went on to lose three consecutive games. Notably, each of these defeats occurred when they were protecting the target.
A glance at the statistics
The Sheikh Zayed Stadium has hosted a total of 47 Twenty20 Internationals.
Notably, teams batting second have won 25 of the 25 matches played here.
Here, the greatest team score is 225/7, and the lowest is 87.
Meanwhile, the best run-chase result on this course is 166/6.
In terms of the IPL, Ben Stokes holds the greatest individual score (107* against MI, 2020).
Wanindu Hasaranga might be the underdog
The Royal Challengers Bangalore will almost certainly select Sri Lankan leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga in their playing XI.
If the Abu Dhabi wicket is sluggish, Hasaranga might possibly open the proceedings.
It will be fascinating to see whether the RCB keep him in reserve for Andre Russell.
Similarly, KKR’s Sunil Narine may offer an early threat to RCB hitters.