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IPL season update: Gujarat in great shape as rivals scramble for play-off spots

The final round of regular season IPL games should deliver some dramatic moments as seven teams scrap for three remaining play-off spots.

Defending champions Gujarat Titans are the only team assured of a place in the play-offs after 13 fixtures, and Hardik Pandya's men are 6/4 to retain the title they won in their first IPL campaign in 2022.

Chennai Super Kings, who travel to Delhi Capitals on Saturday, are the best-placed of Gujarat's rivals and they are 3/1 to emerge from the pack and win the IPL for the fifth time.

Here is a look at how the 2023 Indian Premier League campaign has unfolded so far.

WhatIndian Premier League 2023
WhereMatches staged at 12 venues across India; final at Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad
WhenFriday 31st March to Sunday 28th May 2023
How to watchLive on Sky Sports Cricket
OddsTo Win Outright - Gujarat Titans 6/4, Chennai Super Kings 3/1, Lucknow Super Giants 6/1, Royal Challengers Bangalore 6/1, Mumbai Indians 15/2

Rajasthan desperate to stop the rot in final league fixture

Gujarat Titans lead the way with 18 points from 13 games, but there is a congested look to the standings beneath the holders

Only the bottom two teams, Delhi and Sunrisers Hyderabad, are out of play-off contention going into the last round of fixtures - although Rajasthan Royals, Kolkata Knight Riders and Punjab Kings need to win their last game, boost their net run-rate and hope that other results go their way.

Last year's runners-up Rajasthan had lost four of their last five matches before Friday's trip to face Punjab in Dharamsala - and they were skittled out for just 59, the lowest total of the season, in their most recent defeat to Royal Challengers Bangalore.

The Royals did get it right in their previous game against Kolkata, however, as opener Yashasvi Jaiswal smashed an unbeaten 98 off just 47 balls to lead them to a target of 150 with 41 balls to spare.

They will need more batting pyrotechnics from Jaiswal, Jos Buttler and Sanju Samson in Friday's crunch clash with Punjab, who lost to Delhi in Dharamsala on Wednesday despite an innings of 94, featuring nine sixes, from England's Liam Livingstone.

Hard-hitting Chennai aim to secure top-four berth in Delhi

Chennai Super Kings and Lucknow Super Giants have at least a one-point advantage over the other five teams scrapping for play-off places, but they will want to seal their post-season spots in style with victories on Saturday.

On paper, Chennai have a fairly soft fixture at Delhi - although the Capitals have won five of their last eight matches after a five-game losing streak at the start of the season.

The Super Kings won a strange contest against Delhi on 10th May, when Shivam Dube top-scored in their 167-7 with a 12-ball 25 that included three sixes. He has struck 30 maximums from 231 deliveries this season and is 6/1 to be the Player to Score Most Match 6s on Saturday.

Chennai have been without star signing Ben Stokes for most of the season due to injury and Lucknow's captain and most reliable runscorer KL Rahul is also sidelined.

In Rahul's absence, the Super Giants will look to Quinton de Kock for inspiration against Kolkata. The South Africa opener scored 50 off 29 balls and 140 not out off 70 in last season's wins over KKR and is 13/5 to be Lucknow's Team - Top Batter in Saturday's game.

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IPL: Harry Brook dazzles with century for Sunrisers Hyderabad

Kohli and Du Plessis powering Bangalore's play-off charge

Mumbai Indians missed the chance to seal their play-off place on Tuesday, losing by five runs in Lucknow, but they are 4/6 to beat bottom club Hyderabad at the Wankhede Stadium on Sunday.

All eyes will be on Mumbai's ace T20 batter Suryakumar Yadav, whose last five innings at the Wankhede have been 43, 57, 55, 83 and 103 not out against table-topping Gujarat last Friday.

That was the India star's first IPL century, having made three T20 international tons in the past 12 months, and punters can get 7/1 about A Hundred to be Scored in the Match on Sunday. 

Hyderabad's Heinrich Klaasen and Bangalore's Virat Kohli both scored centuries in the Sunrisers' most recent match on Thursday.

Bangalore are 4/5 to book their place in the play-offs with a home win over Gujarat on Sunday.

The Royal Challengers are renowned as the IPL's great underachievers but, with Kohli finding form and opening partner Faf du Plessis racking up 702 runs in 13 innings, they are 6/1 to win their first title this season.

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