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Ipl 2018
IPL 2018: KKR vs RR match preview - How today's match will decide who makes it to the playoffs and who doesn't?
The Eden Gardens in Kolkata prepares to host the game between home team Kolkata Knight Riders and the Rajasthan Royals on Tuesday as the mad scramble to grab the last two playoff berths begins, since SRH and CSK have already finished as the top two teams.

The results emerging out of the last few matches have ensured that five teams are still in contention for the last two remaining playoff berths which means that virtually every game from here on becomes a knockout. 

Since both teams are levelled with 12 points each, they have everything to play for but no room for error. While KKR is at the third spot owing to a better Net Run Rate, just below them lie Rajasthan Royals in the fourth place.     

Ravichandran Ashwin-led KXIP will also be keenly following today's match as his team too has 12 points and is currently at the fifth position with a Net Run Rate of -0.518. 

Here's how all the three scenarios of today's match will affect the other teams eyeing a place in the playoffs: 

In case Kolkata Knight Riders win 

Kolkata has been an inconsistent team in season 11 of the IPL having won only half of their matches. After suffering two back-to-back defeats at the hands of Mumbai Indians, KKR made an emphatic comeback in their last game hammering 245/6 in 20 overs against KXIP. However, a win today will not guarantee a place in the playoffs for KKR. Kolkata will have to beat RR with a big margin today to ensure KXIP cannot topple them over with a better NRR. In fact, a marginal win for KKR will spoil the chances of other teams of making it to the playoffs, as with 14 points, KKR would still remain at the third spot but with an improved NRR from a win today. 

In case Rajasthan Royals win 

RR have made a strong comeback in VIVO IPL 2018 by registering three back-to-back wins after a long losing streak all thanks to their English import Jos Buttler. A bulk of the runs for RR in this IPL season has come from his bat. Although still in the top four and still very much in contention for the playoffs, RR has poor Net Run Rate owing to some big-margin defeats that the team suffered in the initial part of the tournament. To seal a playoff berth today RR need to beat KKR with a big margin and also win their other remaining game. A big-margin win would take RR to the third place with a better NRR ensuring that it becomes impossible for KXIP to catch up with them. A win for RR today will also make things extremely difficult for MI and RCB, who still remain with 10 points each.

In case the match ends in a draw

A drawn match would mean that both teams will end up with 13 points each with their NRR more or less remaining unaffected. A draw today will mean that all the other three teams still remain in the hunt for a playoff spot.

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