Three playoffs spots for the IPL 2021 edition have been sealed as Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) joined Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Delhi Capitals (DC) in the next stage.

However, it’s a four-way race for the fourth spot.

Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), Punjab Kings (PBKS), Mumbai Indians (MI) and Rajasthan Royals (RR) are all sitting on 10 points. Here’s a look at their qualification scenarios:

Kolkata Knight Riders – Current Position: 4th; Matches Played: 12; Points: 10; NRR: +0.302

Eoin Morgan’s Knight Riders has three wins and two losses in the five games so far. KKR currently sits on fourth spot with two games – against SRH and RR – remaining. Morgan’s men would qualify with wins in both their upcoming fixtures, courtesy a superior Net Run Rate (NRR) of +0.302.

KKR could still sneak into the top-four with a solitary win if MI, PBKS and RR lose one game each in their remaining fixtures and reach to 12 points. Two losses against SRH and RR could bring the curtains down on the Knights campaign.

Remaining matches: KKR vs SRH (Oct 2, Dubai, ongoing); KKR vs RR (Oct 7, Sharjah)


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Punjab Kings – Current Position: 5th; Matches Played: 13; Points: 10; NRR: -0.241

A harrowing defeat to RCB on Sunday meant KL Rahul’s men would have to rely on multiple factors. Punjab’s final league game is against table-topper CSK on October 7th. A win would get it to 12 points with a NRR that is marginally better than RR and MI.

With its best scenario (win two matches and hope that its rivals drop points) now off the cards, Punjab stands on thin ice with its negative NRR (-0.241) hurting its case.

Remaining matches: CSK vs PBKS (Oct 7, Dubai)

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Rajasthan Royals – Current Position: 6th; Matches Played: 12; Points: 10; NRR: -0.337

After what seemed like a dismal start once again, Sanju Samson’s young brigade has done just about enough to keep itself alive in the race. With its remaining matches coming against MI and KKR, Rajasthan’s fate still lies in its own hands.

Two wins in two matches would mean MI and KKR will remain on a maximum of 12 points while RR jumps to 14. PBKS can only reach 12 points with a win in its last game. Like Punjab, Rajasthan’s negative NRR would dent its playoff chances if it loses one of its remaining contests.

Remaining matches: RR vs MI (Oct 5, Sharjah); KKR vs RR (Oct 7, Sharjah)


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Mumbai Indians – Current Position: 7th; Matches Played: 12; Points: 10; NRR: -0.453

Two-time defending champion, Mumbai Indians, is on the brink of a league-stage exit for the first time since 2018. Successive wins in its remaining matches against RR and SRH would shoot up its chances of sealing the last spot. With its net NRR currently the worst among the four teams in contention, Mumbai will keep an eye on Kolkata’s performances.

If KKR slips in one of of its remaining fixtures, MI would simply need to win two games to push Morgan’s men, Rajasthan and Punjab out of the competition.

Remaining matches: RR vs MI (Oct 5, Sharjah); MI vs SRH (Oct 8, Abu Dhabi)

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