LSG Aim for Improved Performance Against PBKS in IPL Clash

LSG Aim for Improved Performance Against PBKS in IPL Clash

Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) will face Punjab Kings (PBKS) in their second Indian Premier League (IPL) match on March 30 in Lucknow. LSG, led by KL Rahul, will aim to improve their all-round performance after losing their opening game against Rajasthan Royals by 20 runs.

LSG’s bowling unit struggled in their first match, with all bowlers except Krunal Pandya leaking runs. The absence of Mark Wood and David Willey has left LSG’s pace attack thin, with Mohsin Khan, Naveen-ul-Haq, and Yash Thakur expected to carry the load. Ravi Bishnoi, who is vying for a place in the upcoming T20 World Cup squad, also had an ordinary outing in the team’s tournament opener.

Skipper Rahul, who has decided to play as a wicketkeeper-batter with the T20 World Cup in mind, scored 58 in his comeback game and will be looking to build on that. He will hope that his opening partner Quinton de Kock returns to his belligerent best against Punjab after missing out against Royals. The team will also rely on the likes of Devdutt Padikkal, Ayush Badoni, Deepak Hooda, and Krunal to deliver down the order.

LSG’s success will also depend on the form of Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis, who was the leading run-getter for the team last year with 408 runs.

PBKS, on the other hand, have a 50-50 record so far, winning one and losing one. The Shikhar Dhawan-led side needs more fluency in the powerplay, which will come if Jonny Bairstow gets going after failing in the first two games. Dhawan, who only plays IPL to IPL, needs to up his strike rate going forward. He himself admitted to batting a bit “slowly” against RCB.

Prabhsimran Singh, who came of age last season, has not been able to capitalize on his starts yet. While all-rounder Sam Curran has shown his prowess with the bat in the two matches, the left-arm seamer has been wayward with the ball. Vice-captain Jitesh Sharma, who is in the running for a World Cup berth, needs to have a stellar season to convince the national selectors.

In the pace bowling department, Kagiso Rabada will look for more support from Curran, Arshdeep Singh, and Harshal Patel. Left-arm spinner Harpreet Brar has been impressive, while leg-spinner Rahul Chahar needs to up his game.