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KKR secure top spot for first time; RCB, CSK, SRH still in hunt for two remaining IPL playoff spots

KKR secure top spot for first time; RCB, CSK, SRH still in hunt for two remaining IPL playoff spots
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) clinched the top position on the points table in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024, making it the first time in the tournament's history that the Kolkata-based franchise has achieved this feat.

Two teams have already qualified for the IPL 2024 playoffs: KKR leads the standings, while RR is on a four-match losing run heading into the tournament's knockout rounds.

With Rajasthan Royals (RR) suffering a defeat against Punjab Kings (PBKS) on Wednesday KKR sealed the top spot in the league phase of IPL 2024 for the first time in league history, while the second spot is still up for grabs. They have now left the door ajar for both SRH and CSK to go past them on the points table.

RR, who were the only contenders capable of challenging KKR for the top spot, with four defeats in a row might lose a chance to make a top-two finish after overpowering the points table for much of the season.

Meanwhile for the Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB), if SRH earns at least one more point, either by a washout or a win, RCB's sole hope is to finish ahead of CSK in the points standings. That implies defeating them by at least 18 runs if they score 200.

On the other hand, a win over RCB on Saturday will secure Chennai Super Kings' (CSK) qualification. If they lose by less than 18 runs (chasing 200), their NRR will remain higher than that of RCB, and they will qualify regardless of other results. If CSK loses by a wider margin, they must hope that SRH loses their remaining games and finishes behind in the run rate, in which case both CSK and RCB will qualify.

CSK may potentially move into second place on the points table if RR loses their last game and SRH wins no more than one match. Then, a win over RCB might boost CSK to second place, since their NRR is now higher than that of both SRH and RR.

Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) are just one point away from qualification. If a game gets washed out due to rain or they win even one of their remaining two games, then SRH will qualify for the playoffs. In case SRH lose both of their games and RCB beats CSK by a margin, which causes CSK's net run rate to drop below that of SRH, the Pat Cummins side will qualify for the playoffs.

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