Riding on individual brilliance, CSK is one of the top two teams in the points table. They’ll now take on Kings XI Punjab who lost to RCB in their most recent encounter where they failed to even last twenty overs. Ravichandran Ashwin, who was an integral part of CSK a couple of years ago, will now be captaining KXIP and will be hoping to put up a superior performance against a side he’s played for eight years. With CSK playing after two years and a new look KXIP side, the tickets are already sold out and we expect a cracker of a game on Sunday, 15th April.
KINGS XI PUNJAB Kings XI Punjab made a strong statement as they starting off their IPL campaign with a win against Delhi Daredevils. Against RCB, they scored 155 while batting first, but lost the match by four wickets.
Batting first, KXIP got off to a blazing start courtesy of KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal. However, they could not get the momentum going and lost three quick wickets which brought down their scoring rate quite considerably. KL Rahul was once again brilliant with the bat, but no support for him in the middle order allowed RCB to claw back and they were restricted to a modest total of 155.
The defense of 155-runs total was never going to be easy, but the way their bowlers made a match out of it was commendable. Mujeeb Ur Rahman picked up an important wicket of Virat Kohli and did not allow RCB’s scoring rate to climb up. Tye and Sharma were smashed for runs in their first overs, but they bounced back beautifully during the death overs.
Kings XI Punjab have overall played extremely good Cricket, but their batting looked to be a little subdued in Bengaluru. They were twenty runs short on a good batting pitch and they’d have to play out of their skins as they’ll have to face tactical prowess of MS Dhoni in an all-important encounter.
CHENNAI SUPER KINGS The news that Chennai Super Kings won’t be playing anymore at the Chepauk during this year’s IPL is a big setback to the team as well as fans alike. Although their key players in Suresh Raina and skipper MSD have failed to fire, their knack of finding heroes have ensured that they stay within the top two spots as far as the points table is concerned.
PCA’s pitch will be a lot different to what they’ve played on in the tournament so far. Their spinners will be a little relieved as they’ll be bowling in a slightly bigger ground, but they’d have to be wary of KL Rahul’s form.
Barring Imran Tahir, CSK’s spinner have lacked consistency and both Harbhajan and Jadeja didn’t get to complete their allowed quota of four overs in any of their games. Batting hasn’t clicked and the absence of Suresh Raina will add to the woes of their batting department.
Sam Billings and Shane Watson’s knock kept CSK in the hunt in the last game despite a poor show by Raina and MS Dhoni. We may see Murali Vijay drafted into the playing XI to take Raina’s position and Rayadu back into the middle order. CSK have already lost two of their best batsmen due to injuries and it won’t be surprising if they decide to pack their batting department and pick Faf du Plessis in the playing XI as a trial by spin waits for them.