KKR vs DC: 3 takeaways from the twenty-sixth encounter

KKR vs DC: 3 takeaways from the twenty-sixth encounter

Delhi Capitals (DC) registered a convincing win by 7 wickets over Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at Eden Gardens, Kolkata on Friday, April 12. 


Delhi Capitals won the toss and elected to field first. Both the teams have changed their playing XI; while Keemo Paul came in place of Lamichhane in Delhi, Lockie Ferguson, Joe Denly and Carlos Brathwaite replaced Narine, Gurney, and Lynn in Kolkata’s playing XI.

Asked to bat, Kolkata was hoping for a flying start but debutant Joe Denly went for a golden duck. Both Shubman Gill and Robin Uthappa tried their best score freely and managed to put up 41 within the powerplay. However, Rishabh Pant’s brilliance sent Uthappa in the dugout. Gill scored his second IPL fifty off 34 balls but other failed to capitalize apart from Russell; who scored 45 off 21 before his dismissal. Kolkata ended up scoring 178 on board after 20 overs.

Chasing the total, both Shikhar Dhawan and Prithvi Shaw started brilliantly. However, that didn’t stay long as Prithvi Shaw fell for 14 while in-form Shreyas Iyer also got out for 6 within the powerplay, putting up 57 runs. Later a 105-run partnership between Shikhar Dhawan and Rishabh Pant helped them to win the game comfortably.

Here are the three talking points of the game:

A slow start of Kolkata

With Sunil Narine and Chris Lynn’s absence, Kolkata Knight Riders opened their inning with a new opening pair. In-form Shubman Gill opened the game alongside new player Joe Denly. However, Denly went for a duck off the very first ball by Ishant Sharma. His pitched up delivery got an inside edge and uprooted the stump. 

Then, Robin Uthappa and Shubman Gill tried to steady the ship. Their rather defensive play cost Kolkata to put up more runs on board on the green surface. Uthappa took 30 balls to score 28. They both added 63 runs before Uthappa’s dismissal. Moreover, the situation didn’t change at all as they managed to score 122 after 15 overs until Andre Russell took the charge on his hand. His quickfire 21-ball 45, including three boundaries and four sixes, powered Kolkata to 178.

Also Read: The Fantasy Guide for MI vs RR

Russell was dismissed off the second delivery of the 19th over and Kolkata managed to score only 17 runs in the end which proved vital as well. Had he not dismissed at that time, Kolkata might have scored nearly 190 after 20 overs.

Failed to take wickets

Kolkata was defending 179 runs which were a decent competitive total. Chasing the target, Delhi lost their inform-opener Prithvi Shaw and captain Shreyas Iyer within the powerplay. But Shikhar Dhawan and Rishabh Pant built a steady partnership which Kolkata failed to break before 17.1 overs. No bowlers were able to restrict them. If they would able to dismiss them, the result could have been different.

Shikhar Dhawan and Rishabh Pant’s 105-run partnership

Delhi opener Shikhar Dhawan was not in a good form in the last couple of games. However, he started pretty well in yesterday’s match along with the other opener Prithvi Shaw. But Shaw couldn’t perform well as he fell for 14 and later their captain Shreyas Iyer also followed him.

Then, the pressure fell upon Shikhar Dhawan and Rishabh Pant. They tried to resurrect the innings but didn’t let the run rate slow down. Dhawan scored his 34th half-century off 32 balls. When they got set, it became difficult for the bowlers to get past them. They both added 105 runs in their chase before Pant got dismissed for 46 off 31, including 4 boundaries and 2 sixes.

However, Dhawan kept on smashing and remained unbeaten at 97 off 63 balls which included 11 fours and 2 sixes. His heroics took Delhi Capitals over the line with 7 balls to spare.

IPL 2019, MI vs RR: Fantasy Team Predictions

IPL 2019, MI vs RR: Fantasy Team Predictions

Match Details
MI vs RR
April 13, 4.00PM IST
Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai


Preview

MI have got their IPL 2019 campaign back on track after losing their first few games and currently stand with 8 points from 6 matches. They have beaten teams like CSK and Punjab at home and will be high on a form when they take on Rajasthan Royals, who look completely out of form. The RR side have not yet found their best combination, with the batters except Sanju Samson and Buttler and to an extent, Steven Smith all looking iffy, with their bowling attack being their biggest letdown. On a track where the batters will have a lot of assistance, the RR bowling risks going for aplenty again.

As far as the playing 11 goes, MI are likely to field the same team, unless Rohit Sharma is back into the fray. Reports suggest that Lasith Malinga might be available too. Rajasthan, on the other hand, might try out a few changes.

MI Predicted 11 

Kieron Pollard (c), Jason Behrendorff, Suryakumar Yadav, Quinton de Kock (wk), Siddhesh Lad/Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan, Alzarri Joseph, Krunal Pandya, Rahul Chahar

RR Predicted 11

Ajinkya Rahane (c), Jos Buttler, Steven Smith, Sanju Samson (wk), Rahul Tripathi/Manan Vohra, Ben Stokes/Liam Livingstone, Riyan Parag, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat, Dhawal Kulkarni

Fantasy Team

Jos Buttler costs a few extra credits than Quinton de Kock, but I have enough funds left to afford him. The Englishman has been one of the few positives for RR this season, with 199 runs at a strike-rate close to 137.50, and he would be eager to get a few more runs before he flies back to England in ten days.

I have as many as 5 batters in my side, as the track will be suitable for shot-making. Steven Smith might not have had the best tournaments unlike David Warner, but he has shown grit and will want to get a move on. Sanju Samson has been the most consistent player for RR, even scoring a hundred this season. For MI, Suryakumar Yadav has got close to 150 runs, and he can be a real threat at the top in the absence of Rohit Sharma, while Keiron Pollard showed signs of his old spark with a match-winning fifty against Punjab. Ishan Kishan can be the player who turns it around for MI in the middle-overs.

Also Read: The Fantasy Guide for KXIP vs RCB

I have ignored Ben Stokes here, as he is not one of the best Fantasy Picks, just like Bumrah. The RR all-rounder comes way too down in the batting order and has not picked up many wickets. He has been expensive as well and has not yet fired as per expectations. The two Pandya brothers – Hardik and Krunal – are must-haves. Bumrah too is not the best point-earner in Dream11. He might bowl economically but has only picked 6 wickets – which does not see too many points in his kitty.

In his place, the bowlers are Gopal – who has been the best RR bowler this tournament, Behrendorff, who started his IPL career with a bang, and Rahul Chahar.

Captain and Vice-captain: Hardik Pandya, Suryakumar Yadav

IPL 2019, KXIP vs RCB: Fantasy Team Predictions

IPL 2019, KXIP vs RCB: Fantasy Team Predictions

Match Details
KXIP vs RCB
April 13, 8.00PM IST
Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium, Mohali


Preview

All eyes will be on Royal Challengers Bangalore as they take the field after a five-day gap. They have not yet registered their first win and will want to grab their first points in their seventh attempt. However, they will have a tough task against a strong Punjab unit at home, who have eight points after 7 games.

The track at Mohali has always assisted the big-hitters, with big scores on offer. The responsibility will be on the duo of AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli to help RCB to a big total, while Punjab will be led by Gayle and KL Rahul. Both teams, however, have a few areas of concern – their bowling attack is not the strongest and is prone to leaking runs, while their lower middle order looks feeble as well. As far as the RCB line-up is concerned, they might ponder a few changes. They have roped in Dale Steyn for injured Nathan Coulter-Nile, but whether the South African has flown to India is not yet confirmed. The Punjab unit might field Moises Henriques.

KXIP Predicted 11

Chris Gayle, Ravichandran Ashwin (c), Mandeep Singh, David Miller, Mohammed Shami, Karun Nair, Lokesh Rahul (wk), Ankit Rajpoot, Sarfaraz Khan, Hardus Viljoen/Moises Henriques, Sam Curran

RCB Predicted 11

Parthiv Patel (wk), AB de Villiers, Tim Southee/Dale Steyn, Virat Kohli (c), Moeen Ali, Yuzvendra Chahal, Pawan Negi, Akshdeep Nath, Marcus Stoinis, Navdeep Saini, Mohammed Siraj/Washington Sundar

Fantasy Team

KL Rahul struggled in the initial part of IPL 2019 but is slowly finding his rhythm. He has amassed 317 runs at an average close to 80 and is one of the key players in the Punjab side. Mayank Agarwal has been the surprise performer this year. The player was stereotyped as a Test batsman but has risen to the occasion with a flurry of unorthodox shots to lead the way. David Miller comes lower down in the order and can turn the game around in a few deliveries. The duo of ABD and Kohli deserve a look-in, as the RCB side will rely on their heroics, and when the team is struggling, they have often led the way.

Also Read: The Fantasy Guide for MI vs RR

The all-rounder’s section sees Moeen Ali, who has played some quickfire knocks in this edition, along with Marcus Stoinis, who has turned the game around for his Big Bash and national teams on many occasions. Along with him, I have gone for Washington Sundar, who might get a chance. The youngster is a wily spinner, and has potential with the ball too, and could be the X-factor.

The bowling attack sees Chahal, who is a must-have, and Shami, who too has surprised with his performances. He has the second highest dot-ball percentage for Punjab this season, and he has taken 9 wickets alongside it. Navdeep Saini rounds up my Dream11 team.

Captain and Vice-captain: Kohli, AB de Villiers

IPL 2019, KKR vs DC- Key Player Battles to watch out for

IPL 2019, KKR vs DC- Key Player Battles to watch out for

The 26th fixture of the 12th edition of the Indian Premier League will see the Kolkata Knight Riders lock horns with the Delhi Capitals at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Friday.


The match that starts at 8 pm will have the temperature on the moderate side with high humidity and a chance of a thunderstorm as it is prevalent in Bengal during this part of the year but that should be over long before the time the game starts.

Last time when the two teams met in this IPL season, a tie had led the match to be decided by a Super Over. It was the 10th fixture of IPL 2019 and the venue was the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi. Even though the Kolkata Knight Riders were able to post a total of 185 with the help of Andre Russell’s quickfire 28-ball 62, the Delhi Capitals had reciprocated equally with Prithvi Shaw scoring a brilliant 99.

In the Super Over, the Delhi franchise was only able to score 10 runs and with Russell in KKR’s arsenal, everyone had believed that Delhi- the home team- will lose the contest. However, the 23-year-old South African Kagiso Rabada stepped up for Delhi and successfully defended those 10 runs by dismissing Andre Russell via his nailing signature yorkers.

All in all, the Eden Gardens pitch is known to be a paradise for the batsmen, so big runs are expected but again let’s be prepared to witness a few sparkling face-offs that are going to be the highlight of the game. Here are the player battles that one cannot miss from tonight’s game:

Chris Lynn vs Sandeep Lamichhane

As we know that today’s game might see big totals again just like the previous clash between the two franchises. Moreover, it’s Eden Gardens- the venue where it’s basically a graveyard for the bowlers. In such cases, it would be absolutely necessary for both teams to break the opening partnership as early as possible. For KKR’s start opener Chris Lynn’s weakness against spin has been exposed over time, the Delhi Capitals could use their 18-year-old legspinner from Nepal to do the job. So far in this IPL season, Lamichhane has bagged 5 wickets in four matches.

Also Read: The Fantasy Guide for this match

Rishabh Pant vs Kuldeep Yadav

Unlike the above duo, Indian wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant is actually a good player of spin. However, this season the young prodigy hasn’t been able to impress the fans so much with his performance in IPL 2019. His unbeaten 78* in Delhi’s tournament opener was instrumental in defeating the Mumbai Indians. Delhi fans are obviously hoping for more from their star batsman. In this scenario, KKR skipper Dinesh Karthik would want to stop him with the help of their star chinaman Kuldeep Yadav who was able to outsmart Pant in the earlier game against Kolkata. 

Andre Rusell vs Kagiso Rabada

Last but not the least, in fact, the best clash in store for tonight’s game is the face-off between the best KKR batsman during the latter overs and the best Delhi Capitals death bowler. The Barbadian power-hitter sports the scores of 48*, 62, 48, 49*, 50* in the IPL season so far. He is in tremendous form and his form and spirit seem almost unstoppable. Last time the two met, Rabada was able to bamboozle Russell with his brilliant yorkers and hence dismissed him in the Super Over while taking Delhi to victory. This player battle is something to watch out for in today’s fixture.

RR vs CSK: 3 takeaways from the twenty-fifth encounter

RR vs CSK: 3 takeaways from the twenty-fifth encounter

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) registered a nail-biting win over Rajasthan Royals (RR) at Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur on Thursday (April 11). 


Chennai Super Kings won the toss and opted to field first. Asked to bat first, Rajasthan Royals didn’t get a flying start as they lost their openers Ajinkya Rahane and Joss Buttler within the powerplay along with Sanju Samson and managed to put up 54. However, their middle order couldn’t make a stable partnership and put up 151/7 after 20 overs.

Chasing 152, Chennai lost their opener Shane Watson for a duck and then Suresh Raina got dismissed by a direct throw. They lost Faf du Plessis and Kedar Jadhav within the powerplay while putting up only 24. However, a 95-partnership between Ambati Rayudu and MS Dhoni guided them for a nail-biting win.

Here are the three talking points from the game:

Dismal batting of Rajasthan’s middle-order

Put into bat, Rajasthan opener Joss Buttler started hitting boundaries and sixes from the very first over. Ajinkya Rahane too joined the party from the second over. But Deepak Chahar gave the first breakthrough to his team by picking up Rahane for 14.

On the other hand, Joss Buttler, who started hitting big shots from the very first over, got dismissed in the 4th over after hitting three consecutive boundaries off Shardul Thakur. His 10-ball 23 knock included 4 boundaries and a maximum. 

Rajasthan put up 54 runs within the powerplay. But their middle orders couldn’t capitalize after a good start. Rahul Tripathi and Steve Smith both failed to score big and got out within 11 overs. They added only 49 runs in the middle overs (7-15) and reach the 100-run mark in the 15th over.

Also Read: The Fantasy Guide for KKR vs DC match

However, Shreyas Gopal hit two boundaries and a maximum off SN Thakur and put up 151 on board. They could have been scored a bigger total had they not lost that many wickets in the powerplay and if the middle-order could capitalize some more.

The partnership between MS Dhoni and Ambati Rayudu

Chasing 152, Chennai lost their opener Shane Watson for a 4-ball duck whereas Suresh Raina got dismissed by a direct throw from Jofra Archer for mere 4 in the very next over. Faf du Plessis was the next to follow them in the dugout for 7 off 10. This was not the end as in-form Kedar Jadhav also got out for mere 1 off 6. Chennai lost their four wickets within the powerplay and managed to put up only 24 runs.

The pressure fell upon Ambati Rayudu and the captain MS Dhoni. Both started to steady the ship. They reached the 50-run mark in the 10th over. They both rotated the strike and hit big shots whenever needed. They reached the 100-run mark in the 15th over by a boundary which was hit by Rayudu. With this boundary, he also completed his half-century off 41 balls. 

Their 95-run stand broke by Ben Stokes in the 18th over when he picked up Rayudu for 57 off 47, including 2 boundaries and 3 sixes. Dhoni reached his half-century in the penultimate over before getting dismissed in the final over for 58 off 43 which included 2 boundaries and 3 sixes.

The final over

Chennai required 18 runs in the final over when Ben Stokes came to bowl the last over. With the set batsman Dhoni at the crease along with Jadeja, it was looking not a difficult task for them as Dhoni is considered one of the best finishers in the world cricket.

However, Jadeja faced the first ball and smashed a maximum over the bowler’s head. The second one was a no-ball which brought Dhoni at the strike. Two runs came from the next ball. 

Eight runs were needed off four balls when Stokes bowled Dhoni which left everyone in shock. But that was not the end as the on-field umpire almost declared the fourth delivery as a no-ball as it has a waist height but the leg umpire didn’t approve it. That made Dhoni angry, he started walking on the field and started arguing with the umpires as well. However, the umpire declared it a normal ball where they needed 8 runs off the final 3 deliveries.

Two runs came from the fifth ball while the final ball became wide. Stoke had to bowl another delivery which went for a maximum. Mitchell Santner hit it down the ground which cleared the boundary rope and the game ended in Chennai’s favor. They won the nail-biting game by 4 wickets.

IPL 2019, KKR vs DC: Fantasy Team Predictions

SRH vs DC: 3 takeaways from the thirtieth encounter

Match Details
KKR vs DC
April 12, 8.00PM IST
Eden Gardens, Kolkata


Preview

KKR have managed to win six games in the IPL 2019 but go into this match against Delhi on the back of a humiliating defeat against CSK. The Dinesh Karthik-led side were traveling for their last three encounters and will enjoy returning and playing at Eden Gardens. The Delhi Capitals, on the other hand, are going into this game after a win that came against Royal Challengers Bangalore, and they will be high on confidence as well.

However, both sides have a number of issues to iron out. Delhi’s middle order and bowling look inconsistent, while KKR have been let down by their openers and their spinners, who have looked drastically below par. However, they might not the much support at the Eden deck, as the track for the last few seasons have been good for batting, with slower bowlers got getting much help. As far as the team line-ups are concerned, Delhi might go into this match unchanged, while KKR might ponder replacing Chris Lynn.

KKR Predicted 11 

Chris Lynn/Joe Denly, Sunil Narine, Nitish Rana, Robin Uthappa, Dinesh Karthik, Shubman Gill, Andre Russell, Piyush Chawla, Harry Gurney, Kuldeep Yadav, Prasidh Krishna

DC Predicted 11

Prithvi Shaw, Shikhar Dhawan, Colin Ingram, Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, Chris Morris, Axar Patel, Amit Mishra, Ishant Sharma, Sandeep Lamichhane, Kagiso Rabada

Fantasy Team

Rishabh Pant bats higher up the order, so he is a better Fantasy Pick that Dinesh Karthik, whose spot in the batting order is not fixed. On occasions, he comes after the fall of Rana’s wicket, while he often sends Shubman Gill before himself, and hence, it is a safer bet to go with the Delhi keeper. He bats in the top 4, and even though his form has waned off a bit, the Eden track should assist him.

Uthappa and Rana are the two batters from KKR in my side. Both have given the side crucial partnerships this season after the loss of the openers, and with Uthappa in particular accustomed to the conditions at Kolkata, he could hold the key once again. Rana is in top form as well, having started off the IPL with two fifties, and he would be eager to continue his form. Shreyas Iyer has got some runs under his belt, and once again will look to continue his form, especially with the KKR spinners not in top gear. Prithvi Shaw has been chosen over Dhawan, as he is cheaper, and has been getting runs more consistently when compared to the left-hander.

Also Read: Reasons why KKR may win this season

Andre Russell’s selection in the team does not need a discussion, while Sunil Narine too is capable of earning points with both bat and ball. Though he has not been at his best with the cherry, he has scored some crucial cameos, which makes him a good fantasy pick. Chris Morris has six wickets from four games and will want the back of the KKR openers soon.

Piyush Chawla is accustomed to bowling at Eden Gardens, while Gurney was seen bowling above 150kmph at the nets, which makes him a real threat, especially in the powerplay overs. If he and Rabada – yet another express pace bowler – can get their yorkers in the right position, they will be the players to watch out for.

Captain and Vice-captain: Russell, Uthappa

MI vs KXIP: 3 takeaways from the twenty-fourth encounter

MI vs KXIP: 3 takeaways from the twenty-fourth encounter

Kieron Pollard’s blistering 83 off 31 guided Mumbai Indians (MI) to register a nail-biting final ball win over Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) on Wednesday, April 10 at Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai. 


Mumbai Indians won the toss and opted to field first. Asked to bat, Kings XI Punjab got off to a flying start with their in-form openers KL Rahul and Chris Gayle. Both the openers added 116 runs in 12.5 overs before Gayle’s dismissal. However, a blitzy century of KL Rahul powered Punjab to 197 on board.

Chasing 198, Mumbai lost their first wicket for 28. But a stable as well as quickfire 83-ball 31 knock from stand-in captain Kieron Pollard gave Mumbai their another victory in the final ball of the match.

Here are the three talking points from the game:

The opening partnership between KL Rahul and Chris Gayle

Put into bat, Punjab started in a great way. Though Mumbai restricted them in the first four overs as Punjab managed to put up 20 runs. But they were unable to stop both the in-form openers from then onwards. Chris Gayle took on Behrendorff for three sixes and a boundary in the fifth over and managed to put up 50 runs within the powerplay.

After that, both the batsmen started punishing every bowler. KL Rahul hit Alzarri Joseph for a maximum and a boundary back to back in the seventh over while Gayle hit Hardik Pandya a six and two back to back boundaries. They didn’t leave a single bowler to punish and added 116 runs in 12.5 overs prior to Chris Gayle’s dismissal for 63 off 36, including three boundaries and seven sixes.

Also Read: The Fantasy Guide for RR vs CSK

Later, KL Rahul scored a blistering 64-ball 100 and remained unbeaten. He became the third Indian player to score a century in both IPL and T20s after Rohit Sharma and Suresh Raina.

Rather slow middle-order

After getting a stormy start of the innings and scored more than 100 runs in the first 11 overs, Punjab were hoping for a huge total for their opponent Mumbai Indians to chase. But Chris Gayle’s dismissal showed the batting dismal with in-form Mayank Agarwal’s absence.

Apart from Rahul who reached the triple figure and Gayle who reached the double-figure, no other batsmen were able to score a double-digit. They scored only 30 runs in the middle overs from 12-17 and lost three wickets in the likes of Chris Gayle, in-form David Miller and Karun Nair. This sudden collapse in the batting line up didn’t allow them to cross 2000-run mark in the 20 overs. 

turned out as a moment in which Punjab will avoid repeating in the future. This was the reason why KXIP failed to cross the 200-run mark. If they could do it, they might have won the game.

Kieron Pollard’s match-winning knock

Kieron Pollard is one of the trump cards of Mumbai Indians squad. He has the ability to turn the table single-handedly. Once again, he showcased his talent and won the game for Mumbai.

After getting a good start and KL Rahul’s century led Punjab to 197. Chasing their highest ever IPL score at home, Mumbai lost Siddhesh Lad within the powerplay. With the regular captain, Rohit Sharma’s absence, Mumbai’s batting line up was a bit weak than the other games.

However, Suryakumar Yadav’s dismissal in the 8th over brought Kieron Pollard on the field. He then steadied the ship with Ishan Kishan and added 30-run where Ishan made only 7. Hardik Pandya and Krunal Pandya both failed to capitalize with the bat and at one point he was running out of the partners from the non-strikers’ end.

Pollard took on every bowler for boundaries and maximums at regular intervals. He smashed a stormy 83 off 31 deliveries which included three fours and ten huge sixes. His heroics saved Mumbai from the loss and they registered their fourth wins out of six games by 3 wickets.

IPL 2019: RR vs CSK- Key Player Battles to watch out for

The 25th match of IPL 2019 sees a forlorn Rajasthan Royals host the dominant Chennai Super Kings at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur on Thursday.


The season has been thus far pole apart for the 2 teams. Rajasthan are languishing at 7th with only a solitary victory against bottom-placed Royal Challengers Bangalore, while Chennai are roaring at the top of the league table with 10 points from 6 games. True to their form, Rajasthan Royals are coming into the fixture after a meek submission to KKR, while Chennai come in after a one-sided victory against the same side. This is the second time the two are facing off this season, with Chennai winning last time in a close-run affair that saw MS Dhoni at his sublime best, scoring a match-winning unbeaten knock of 75.

Dhoni has been one of the key batsmen for his side. With Dhoni along with the likes of Suresh Raina, Kedar Jadhav, and Ambati Rayudu, Chennai possess some of the best Indian batting lineups. Opener Faf du Plessis has been in fine nick playing the last couple of games, and Chennai fans would hope he gets off to a good start. However, Chennai’s strength lies in their bowling. Whether it be the fantastic showing by experienced spin trio Tahir, Harbhajan and Jadeja; or the incredible discipline shown by young pacer Deepak Chahar, the CSK bowling lineup will be a formidable task for the Rajasthan batsmen.

The Royals batsmen have usually been in good form for the majority of the season, with the likes of Jos Buttler, Sanju Samson and recently Steve Smith coming to the fore. However, the last match with KKR was a disappointment as the Royals batsmen meekly turned over against a disciplined bowling side. The Jaipur crowd would hope to not see a repeat of that performance. Talking about a disciplined bowling attack, that is exactly what Rajasthan have lacked thus far, with leggie Shreyas Gopal being the main, and sometimes only, a threat in the attack. Players like Jofra Archer and particularly Ben Stokes need to stand up and make themselves counted by picking wickets against CSK. Otherwise, it might be too much of an uphill task for the Royals.

Here are 3 key player battles to watch out for:

Steve Smith vs Imran Tahir

After a sluggish start to the season coming off from a long absence from cricket, Smith came to the fore in the last match against KKR, with his unbeaten 73 being the shining light in a disappointing Royals innings that saw them struggle to score at a good pace. Rajasthan would hope that Smith continues in the same vein, but at a quicker pace to set the stage for the Royals. However, he would face an extremely difficult challenge in Imran Tahir, who has been the wrecker-in-chief for the men in yellow. Tahir’s disciplined bowing has enabled him to do his fabled wicket celebrations 9 times thus far this season, and he is 2 wickets shy of the Purple Cap. On Thursday, he would hope to dismiss Smith, and celebrate as only he can. This will be an incredibly entertaining key face-off for this match, and we can’t wait for this player battle.

Also Read: The Fantasy Guide for this match

Jos Buttler vs Deepak Chahar

What an excellent season Deepak Chahar has had thus far. The 26-year-old right-arm has bowled with pace and discipline and has scalped 8 wickets in his 6 games with an astonishing economy of 5.95. Chahar’s bowling has been key to Chennai keeping the opposition quiet at the start of the innings, and building pressure on them while taking regular wickets. He would hope to do the same thing against Jos Buttler. Buttler has been consistent with 176 runs in 5 games at an average of 35.20, which is pretty high for an opening batsman. However, he would be facing a tough task in Chahar, and this key battle would go a long way in determining the match.

MS Dhoni vs Shreyas Gopal

Dhoni has been proving in the IPL that he is not finished yet. Chennai’s leading run-scorer, Captain Cool has only been dismissed one in the IPL en route to his 156 runs. His best performance came against the Royals in their previous meeting scoring a 59-ball-73 to win it for the men in yellow in a thrilling contest that went down to the wire. Dhoni is instrumental at the back end of the innings, whether it needs to be a composed innings to take the team home, or a few boundaries to add 20-odd runs to the score. His batting against Shreyas Gopal would be a key player battle for sure in this match. Gopal has been Rajasthan’s best bet in the bowling department, with his disciplined bowling picking up 8 wickets at an economy of 6.37 and a strike rate of just 12. Gopal would hope to snare the Chennai captain too, else it might spell trouble for the Royals.

IPL 2019, RR vs CSK: Fantasy Team Predictions

KKR vs CSK: 3 takeaways from the twenty-ninth encounter

Match Details
RR vs CSK
April 11, 8.00PM IST
Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur


Preview

CSK are on a roll, having won five of their six games in IPL 2019 thus far, while Rajasthan Royals are struggling, notching up just two points from their five outings. They will be under a lot of pressure, as one more loss could dent their chances of a semis berth. They will be under a lot of pressure, having lost to KKR in a humiliating manner, but they will have the home advantage. RR have managed to win their last three games against CSK at Jaipur, and with the Dhoni-led team struggling on tracks that are flat, RR could fancy their chances.

As far as the playing 11 is concerned, Rajasthan could ring in a few changes, if Sanju Samson is fit. With Rahane struggling for form, the presence of the Indian is a necessity in the camp. The side could also look to strengthen their bowling department against a team that has in-form batters. CSK on the other hand might go in unchanged.

RR Predicted 11 

Ajinkya Rahane (c), Jos Buttler (wk), Steven Smith, Rahul Tripathi, Ben Stokes, Prashant Chopra/Sanju Samson, Krishnappa Gowtham, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Dhawal Kulkarni, Sudhesan Midhun/Varun Aaron

CSK Predicted 11

Shane Watson, Faf du Plessis, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni (c/wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Scott Kuggeleijn, Deepak Chahar, Harbhajan Singh, Imran Tahir

Fantasy Team

Though Dhoni is in form as well, picking Buttler is a wiser move, as he not only opens the innings, which increases his point scoring abilities but also as he is familiar with the conditions at Jaipur and will be eager to leave a mark before he flies away to England on April 23.

I have as many as 5 batters in my side, as the deck is going to assist the batters. Steven Smith showed his determination en route a well-made 50 against KKR, while the four CSK batters – Raina, Faf, Watson, and Kedar are all in form and at least one of them will fire against an ordinary bowling side that is yet to find its rhythm.

Also Read: Reasons why CSK may not win the title this season

The reason I have ignored Ben Stokes from my Dream11 team is that he bats way down the order, which means he might not get adequate points in that department. He has also picked up only 4 wickets whilst going at an economy of over 10, which means he might not be the best Fantasy pick. In his place, I have Ravindra Jadeja and Krishnappa Gowtham as my all-rounders. The two are wily bowlers and can make in-roads even in tough situations, and with both only costing 8.5credits, they are utility buys.

Imran Tahir has shown his mettle match after match in this edition of the league, while Gopal has been one of the best performers from RR this season. Deepak Chahar, who replies on variations can be a threat in the first six overs.

Captain and Vice-captain: Watson, Jos Buttler

CSK vs KKR: 3 takeaways from the twenty-third encounter

CSK vs KKR: 3 takeaways from the twenty-third encounter

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) has locked horn with Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) on April 9 where CSK claimed an easy win. 


Chennai Super Kings won the toss and opted to field first at MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. Asked to bat first, Kolkata were hoping to put up a huge total but their plan flopped as soon both the openers got dismissed within 2 overs. They failed to stable the innings and reduced to 29-6 after the powerplay. However, Russell scored an unbeaten fifty and led his team to 108 after 20 overs.

Chasing the total, Chennai also lost their opener Shane Watson for 17. However, a 13-ball 14 from Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu’s 21-ball 31 and Faf du Plessis’ unbeaten 43 guided them to register an easy win over Kolkata with 2.4 overs to spare.

Here are the three talking points:

Deepak Chahar’s early strike

Kolkata has been in a great position with their all-round performances in this season of IPL. Put into bat, Kolkata faced two big losses. Deepak Chahar handed over the first breakthrough to his team as he dismissed Chris Lynn in the very first over for a five-ball duck.

Also Read: Reasons why KKR may win this season

The second one was Nitish Rana; who misjudged the ball and ended up giving an easy catch to Rayudu at short mid-wicket region. In his 3rd over, he dismissed Robin Uthappa after the batsman scoring mere 11 runs and finished his figure with a brilliant spell of 4-0-20-3.

A slow start in the powerplay

For the first time in this IPL, Kolkata found themselves in a critical situation. Due to economical spells from Harbhajan Singh, Ravindra Jadeja, and Imran Tahir, Kolkata never looked dominating. 

On the other hand, Chahar’s opening spell dismantled Kolkata’s batting. Soon they reduced to 29/4 after the powerplay. They managed to put up 47 runs in 10 overs. Later a rather stable-knock from Andre Russell helped them to put up 108 on board.

Piyush Chawla’s catch

Piyush Chawla took a stunner to send back Suresh Raina in the dugout on Tuesday when he ran towards back from mid-on. Suresh Raina was playing steadily during the powerplay and already hit a boundary and a maximum. 

But he mistimed Sunil Narine’s length ball and hit a slog sweep. The ball went up and Chawla took a brilliant catch after covering a huge distance and with a dive.

However, their total was pretty low and easily chasable. Hence, Chennai won the game convincingly.