After finishing third last season, Team Hyderabad will open their Indian T20 League 2021 campaign with a mouth-watering clash against Team Kolkata at the MA Chidambaram Stadium on April 11, Sunday.
Both Hyderabad and Kolkata had finished on 14 points last season with the former edging Kolkata narrowly through superior run-rate to squeeze into the playoffs.
With the teams retaining their core players from last season, the match is expected to be a close affair on a spin-friendly pitch at the Chepauk. Both sides have experienced players in the high-profile T20 tournament and have faced each other 19 times over the years.
Two-time Indian T20 League champions Team Kolkata boasts of players like Sunil Narine and Varun Chakravarthy and have understandably been the more successful side in Chennai.
|Record in Chennai
Interestingly, Hyderabad have won all of their coin tosses in their last five matches but managed to win only two matches. Kolkata, on the other hand, haven't won the toss on the last five occasions but have won three matches.
While both the sides boast of a strong batting line-up, the Eoin Morgan-led Kolakata edges past David Warner's Hyderabad with a better average in the last five matches when batting first. While Kolkata average 158, Hyderabad trail them at 152.8, thereby making the toss an important factor before the match begins.
|Coin Toss and H2H last 5 matches
While Kolkata have a better record against Hyderabad overall, it is Team Hyderabad who boast of better individual performers against Kolkata. David Warner has played 23 times against Kolkata making a whopping 912 runs with two centuries and four fifties to his name.
Kolkata's best bet against Hyderabad, on the other hand, is their former captain Dinesh Karthik, who has played them 18 times and scored 259 runs.
The scenario doesn't differ much in bowling as well. While Hyderabad's Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been lethal against Kolkata scalping 27 wickets in 21 matches, Kolkata's best bet against Hyderabad has been Kuldeep Yadav, who has 10 wickets in 10 matches.
Feature Image Courtesy: AFP/ Dibangshu Sarkar