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We are three matches into Indian Premier League and all the matches have lived up to the hype that has been around for so long, the first match a little less though. Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore fought hard in the low scoring contest wherein the Superkings prevailed in the end. Delhi Capitals, on the other hand, were involved in a high-scoring match in which they survived a few little cameos and eventually ended up on the winning side. With two teams set to meet on 26th March at Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi, the fans will be reminded of the interesting advertisement which highlighted the battle between Rishabh Pant and MS Dhoni, Pant's mentor. Both the teams have a different style of play and it will be interesting to see who comes out on top.
Delhi's win over Mumbai Indians was all about Rishabh Pant's knock as he single-handedly took Delhi Capitals not just over 180, but 13 runs clear of 200 which proved to be more than enough even against a power-packed MI batting lineup. Rishabh Pant is likely to play a key role once again as Delhi Capitals' top-order didn't really look threatening in their first match.
Despite the top order's failure, we do not expect Delhi to make any changes to their lineup. The likes of Shreyas Iyer and Prithvi Shaw looked good before they were dismissed and Colin Ingram provided them with momentum after stabilizing the innings. Shikhar Dhawan, however, struggled to score freely even on an excellent batting deck which could be a concern once again, on a surface which won't be as easy as the one at Wankhede was.
Defending 213 should be easy for the kind of bowling lineup Delhi has, but that was not the case. Although the margin of the win at the end happened to be big, the match was a lot closer than it looked on paper. Having said that, the likes of Kagiso Rabada, Trent Boult, and Ishant Sharma bowled picked up wickets at regular intervals which proved to be the difference between two sides.
Apparently, a lot has changed for the Capitals with the change in their name and they look to be a more solid and a better-balanced side. However, they are still a bit inexperienced and prone to crack under pressure in nervous situations.
Prithvi Shaw, Shikhar Dhawan, Shreyas Iyer, Colin Ingram, RR Pant, Keemo Paul, Axar Patel, R Tewatia, Amit Mishra, Kagiso Rabada, I Sharma.
It was business as usual for both Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore as the former stamped its authority once again in the opening fixture of the Indian Premier League. On a rank-turner, CSK spinners wreaked havoc on a star-studded RCB batting lineup as they romped to a massive win.
It was a sticky sort of wicket at Chennai in the opening game and there couldn't have been a better set of bowlers than CSK had to exploit those conditions. MS Dhoni surprised one and all first by picking up Harbhajan Singh in the playing eleven and then handing him the ball in only the second over of the match. The man with plenty of experience behind him, the Turbanator, didn't disappoint and accounted for the two most important dismissals, of Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers.
Ravindra Jadeja and Imran Tahir cleaned up the remaining wickets as RCB was completely dismantled for an embarrassing total of 70. Batting wasn't easy on that surface which was apparent in CSK's innings as well with Shane Watson struggling to connect who was eventually dismissed in the second over of the innings. Ambati Rayudu and Suresh Raina did stitch an important partnership, but it was rather laborious and not fluent.
It was a kind of match where most of the CSK's resources were unused and their batting order wasn't tested. Though the surfaces of Delhi and Chennai have a lot in common, they have an altogether different challenge in front of them. Having said that, with the kind of players they have, they have the experience of playing in almost all kind of conditions which will certainly come in handy at a tricky surface of Delhi.
SR Watson, Ambati Rayudu, SK Raina, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni, Ravindra Jadeja, Dwayne Bravo, Deepak Chahar, SN Thakur, Harbhajan Singh, Imran Tahir.
Although the surface at Feroz Shah Kotla gets slower and lower as the game progresses, we are unlikely to see any significant change over the course of forty overs. Also, with the likelihood of dew falling down, the skipper winning the toss is expected to elect to field first.
Read our guide on toss predictions to learn how we analyze and come up with our tips.
The surface at Feroz Shah Kotla usually favors the batsmen, but the deck is also known to assist spinners especially with the older ball. It was also apparent in the last ODI between India and Australia where both the sides struggled to time the ball once the ball got softer. It's expected to be a clear night with temperatures hovering around 25 degrees and dew likely to play a part. The team batting first will be looking to put at least 170 runs on the board.
Delhi's surface is known to be good for batting and conducive to spin bowling. Considering this fact, it will be wise to include a couple of spinners in the lineup - be it all-rounders of full-time bowlers. Considering the way Rishabh Pant played in the last match, he is our pick for the wicket-keeper.
Imran Tahir has an exceptional record at Delhi and is known to pick wickets in the middle overs. Alongside him, we have decided to keep Harbhajan Singh and Kagiso Rabada, who both were terrific in their respective opening games in our Dream11 side. Shane Watson, Suresh Raina, Shreyas Iyer, Prithvi Shaw, and Colin Ingram are our picks for the batting department.
Find more Dream11 predictions and other tips and tricks on our dedicated Dream11 guide.
The battle between Delhi Capitals and Chennai Super Kings is more of an encounter between experience and flamboyance. While the average age of CSK's squad is around 33, it is well under 30 for the Capitals. Chennai Super Kings carry a few laggards in the field but have an excellent captain known to keep right fielders in the right place. On the other hand, Shreyas Iyer is relatively new to the captaincy and might lack creativity if things start going awry. While both the teams are almost equally matched on paper, CSK fares better as far as experience in concerned. We expect to it to be a closely fought game with CSK emerging on top, by a small margin though.
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