Tending towards “Balls of Steel”
So far, so good! Langeveldt aka MouseMan has been consistent and
prodding, Ishant testy, Kartik questioning, and Mathews an absolute
relevation. The last last quota of 4-6 overs are covered by Shukla,
Hodge and Ganguly himself, and Dada would hope that this good form
continues. Mind you, they’ve got Mendis and Dinda as cover ups. A bit
of variety in terms of off-spin option would be nice, and when Gayle
gets into the squad, I suspect it would be an embarassment of riches.
It is common knowledge that Agarkar is not in the XI simply because
the opposition would just be awed into submission without the game
being played, and this would upset the spectators all around. The
perils of being God.
No changes expected here. Dada typically likes to stick to a winning
Dangerously close to their bowlers “Taking up Belly Dancing”
Problems galore. When you have an extremely erratic Morkel as your
opening bowler, it tells a story. It has been reported that Tyagi has
recurrent dreams of Gilly and Symonds taking turns to whip his arse.
The pace options for CSK looks bad, and I mean real bad. If that’s not
enough, Dhoni would be forced to through the ball the Balaji or Kemp,
both of whom seem head the ” National Charity House for Run Giving”.
Kemp is a poor man’s Morkel, and Morkel seems to be a poor man’s
One look at the bench would tell you that Dhoni has Gony and Ntini as
his options. Knowing Dhoni, it would not surprise me to see him go for
a double change here, replacing both Tyagi and Morkel for Gony and
Ntini. If not anything else, atleast the energy levels would improve
with Ntini around.
More likely is that Dhoni would give Morkel another chance , and
replace Kemp with Ntini instead.
The spin department looks ok with Murali patrolling 1 end, and the fast
imroving Ashwin on the other. However, completing the quota of 20 overs
with minimal damage looks to be the bane of CSK, and guys like Raina ,
Balaji must step up and lend support.
2 changes thus: Ntini in for Kemp, and Gony for Tyagi.
“Not bad soldier…not bad…”
Competent would be the right word here, with everyone chipping in here
or there. Tiwary looked good at the top in the last game. Shah and
Mathews are sharp in the lower order. The positions 3-5 looks a little
shaky, with Hodge, Dada and Pujara being the culprits here. However,
it’s still early days, and we might not see a shake up yet. Pujara, the
youngster, deserves a chance or 2. Shukla/Gavaskar have the domestic
experience to provide any impetus or rear-guard action.
1 Change expected, I’d think that Shukla comes back in for Gavaskar.
closer to “life is like a box of chocolates….”
It’s still early days yet, and the traditionally strong CSK batting
line up looks a little rusty. Hayden is busy toying around with the
mongoose and other wild animals. Vijay and Badri are throwing away
their chances, and Raina hasn’t gotten into any sort of groove yet.
When you have the top 4 batsmen doing so little, there’s too much
pressure for the rest of the folks. With Vijay not looking so good,
I’d expect Dhoni to bring in Parthiv to the XI and partner Hayden.
Parthiv, while not great, , has generally shown to be good enough to
get twenty something runs a game, which is twenty something runs more
than Vijay right now (with whom my patience is running really thin).
Badri, for his middle order position and experience , may get another
KKR: Tiwary, Hodge, Ganguly, Pujara, Shah, Mathews, Shukla, Murali
Kartik, Langaveldt, Ishant
CSK: Hayden, Parthiv, Raina, Badrinath, Dhoni, Morkel, Ashwin, Gony,
Murali, Ntini, Balaji
CSK Bowling vs KKR Batting: SLIGHT ADVANTAGE KKR
Though I don’t think much of the CSK’s bowling attack, I tend to think
that KKR’s batting is not extremely great either, but they’ve been in
fairly good touch. If Ntini and Morkel can expose the top order to
Murali, the going might be tough for KKR. However, with Shah , Mathews
in great nick, and with Dada’s class, I’d give the slight edge to KKR
for now. Had Gayle, Macullum been around, this would have been quite
The key for CSK is to make sure that Murali is there to bowl his max
quota of overs to the in form batsmen of Mathews and Shah. They need
to keep Tiwary and Hodge quiet or dismiss them with their pace
KKR Bowling vs CSK Batting: EVEN
I would have normally given the advantage to the very strong CSK
batting line up, but I’ll believe their form when I see it. KKR bowling
is not awe-inspiring, but they are a smart bunch led ably by Dada, who
knows how and when to make his changes. Hayden, with or without the
mongoose, is the key, and he has to stay on till atleast the 12-14th
overs for CSK to have any advantage. The key to KKR’s bowling is their discipline. All their bowlers are good for a wicket each atleast (the same cannot be said of the CSK bowling, and more importantly, maintaining a steady line. If they can frustrate Hayden and sniff him out early, all bets are off.
It’s a day for slight upsets, and KKR find themselves the favourites this time around. It’s Dada vs Dhoni, and it’s in Eden Gardens. I have a feeling that Hayden and chennai will find a bit of rhythm . They’d bat first and set a good target. When they do that, their bowlers will rise to the occasion and stiffle the KKR batting.
CSK wins this one.