Kanpur: Skipper Suresh Raina's return could not have been better-timed as Gujarat Lions, jolted by the tournament's biggest ever defeat against Royal Challengers Bangalore, seek to revive their campaign when they face off with Kolkata Knight Riders here today.

Suresh Raina. Pic/AFP
Suresh Raina. Pic/AFP

The Knight Riders will be handicapped by the absence of in-from all-rounder Andre Russell, and Gujarat Lions will look to capitalise on the void at the Green Park, which will be hosting its first-ever IPL match.

In the pecking order, KKR are placed in second position with 14 points and a good positive net run rate.

The two-time former champions have won seven matches and lost five in 12 outings so far, and a win today will definitely bring them closer to a play-off berth.

Captains' wishlist
Suresh Raina (Gujarat Lions)
> Dwayne Smith, Brendon McCullum fire at the start
> Dwayne Bravo finds some form with the bat
> In-form KKR skipper Gautam Gambhir is dismissed early

Gautam Gambhir (KKR)
> He continues his fine form with the bat
> Spinners Piyush Chawla, Sunil Narine restrict flow of runs
> Injured Andre Russell's absence isn't felt