The Indian Premier League season 12 has started in the right earnest and the first weekend has seen some spectacular action. Taking the baton forward will be Delhi Capitals (DC) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) with their second match of the season at Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in Delhi on Tuesday.
Both sides have won their opening games in contrasting styles. CSK dominated Bangalore in a low-scorer, while DC gazumped Mumbai in a high-scoring encounter. Another win will help set the pace for the other teams to follow and both DC and CSK will be eyeing a positive result.
The first match saw some robust hitting from Rishabh Pant (78* off 27 balls) and Colin Ingram (47 off 32). DC bowlers kept it tight with the pace bowlers Kagiso Rabada and Ishant Sharma picking up two wickets apiece.
The pace of the wicket will be under question, as Delhi would want a quick pitch to counter the CSK spinners. Sandeep Lamichhane’s leg-spin is still not unleashed, which can be their trump card.
Chennai rode on the spin twins Harbhajan Singh (3/20) and Imran Tahir (3/9) to rout Bangalore for a paltry 70. They aced the chase with seven wickets in hand, but questions will be asked of their bowlers on a proper track.
Writing CSK off is at one’s peril, as teams found out last season. The experienced Shane Watson and MS Dhoni add great value to the side, while Dwayne Bravo is a real help with his all-round skills.
Fantasy Players to Watch
Rishabh Pant was in his elements against Mumbai, striking at 288.89. As his seven sixes showed, if he gets in his mood, there is very little the bowlers can do.
Shane Watson had a rough day against Bangalore, but has some excellent runs from Big Bash and PSL in his bank. He is generally a slow starter, but backing him for runs in this game could be a calculated risk.
Imran Tahir is enjoying a great season of cricket with South Africa and CSK. He has taken at least two wickets in five of his last six matches and should relish another chance against Delhi.
DC: 1 Prithvi Shaw 2 Shikhar Dhawan 3 Shreyas Iyer (C) 4 Colin Ingram 5 Rishabh Pant (WK) 6 Axar Patel 7 Keemo Paul 8 Rahul Tewatia 9 Sandeep Lamichhane 10 Kagiso Rabada 11 Ishant Sharma
CSK: 1 Shane Watson 2 Ambati Rayudu 3 Suresh Raina 4 MS Dhoni (C & WK) 5 Kedar Jadhav 6 Ravindra Jadeja 7 Dwayne Bravo 8 Deepak Chahar 9 Shardul Thakur 10 Harbhajan Singh 11 Imran Tahir
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