The Indian Premier League (IPL)'s 53rd game is set to take place on Monday and will feature a contest between Punjab Kings and Kolkata Knight Riders. For the team coached by Nitish Rana, winning is very essential since losing would effectively put an end to their chances of qualifying for the playoffs. Although Punjab Kings have some breathing room, a defeat would also put them in a scenario where they would need to win in order to move up to the top four spots in the points table.
Umesh Yadav, KKR's top fast bowler, is healthy and eligible to play, which is fantastic news ahead of the match. Due to a hamstring injury, he hasn't played since April 26 against RCB, but ESPNCricinfo reports that the speed bowler has healed and is ready for selection. It is yet unknown whether he would be given a spot in the starting XI. In his place, two other bowlers—Harshit Rana and Vaibhav Arora—played, although it is still unclear if Umesh would immediately rejoin the starting XI.
Shardul Thakur, meanwhile, made progress with the ball in the previous game against SRH after playing only as a hitter against GT. He took two significant wickets and bowled three overs for only 23 runs. The good news for the Indian team is that both Umesh and Shardul have been selected in the roster for the WTC Final against Australia, which will take place next month.
The following are the members of the Kolkata Knight Riders squad: Rahmanullah Gurbaz (w), Jason Roy, Venkatesh Iyer, Nitish Rana (c), Andre Russell, Rinku Singh, Sunil Narine, Shardul Thakur, Vaibhav Arora, Harshit Rana, Varun Chakaravarthy, Anukul Roy, Suyash Sharma, N Jagadeesan, Kulwant Khejroliya,
Shahrukh Khan, Prabhsimran Singh, Shikhar Dhawan (captain), Matthew Short, Liam Livingstone, Jitesh Sharma (w), Sam Curran, Arshdeep Singh, Rahul Chahar, Mohit Rathee, Shivam Singh, Nathan Ellis, Atharva Taide, Mohit Rathee, Baltej Singh, Vidhwath Kaverappa, and Gurnoor Brar are all members of the Punjab Kings squad.