Indian Premier League is well past half-way but Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore have not faced each other yet. The two teams now clash for first time this season at CSK’s home venue (Ranchi). Both teams are contrastingly placed on the points table with CSK almost into the next round and RCB on the brink of being of elimination.
Dwayne Smith and Brendon McCullum right from the start have adapted to opening slot and since then CSK was not required to tamper with their positions and why would they when both batsmen feature on the list of most runs. The duo have laid platform for most of CSK’s wins.
Yuvraj Singh’s form was worrying factor for RCB before the start of IPL and during the initial games as well, but with two back to back superlative performances he has been the only positive thing (excluding AB de Villiers & Yuzvendra Chahal)for the Bangalore side.
Ishwar Pandey replaced Ashish Nehra after the first game and since then has featured regularly in Playing XI. Pandey who has pace on his side did a good job but as the tournament is progressing he is finding it tough to pick wickets. In nine matches Pandey has bagged only four wickets and in last four games he has been expensive giving away runs at a rate of 8.50 per over.
Virat Kohli’s form and dreadful bowling has badly hurt RCB thus far. Kohli in 10 innings has scored 154 at an average of 17.11 that is far-off from what he is capable of. There is danger of elimination looming over RCB and Kohli has to deliver indubitably along with bowlers.
Mohit Sharma and Yuzvendra Chahal for their respective sides have delivered consistently. Sharma has been touch expensive but 18 wickets under his belt compensates that while Chahal has picked 12 wickets with a startling economy of 6.48.
CSK: MS Dhoni (c & wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, David Hussey, Ravindra Jadeja, Suresh Raina, Francois du Plessis, Dwayne Smith, Brendon McCullum, Ashish Nehra, Mohit Sharma, Ishwar Pandey, Ben Hilfenhaus, John Hastings, Samuel Badree, Matt Henry, Mithun Manhas, Vijay Shankar, Ronit More, Baba Aparajith, Pawan Negi.
RCB: Virat Kohli (c), Yuvraj Singh, Parthiv Patel, Vijay Zol, Varun Aaron, Ashok Dinda, An Ahmed, Harshal Patel , Shadab Jakati, Sandeep Warrier, Tanmay Mishra, Yogesh Takawale, Sachin Rana, Yuzvendra Chahal, Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers, Muttiah Muralitharan, Ravi Rampaul, Albie Morkel, Mitchell Starc, Rilee Rossouw.