Going by history, Daredevils are the proven team with two semifinal entries in first two editions of the tournament. Warriors on the other hand are just newcomer to the big block of 8 teams. Yet, after first 2 matches of IPL Warriors are on top of the table, while DD are at the bottom. Who is the Real Underdog then!!
There is no history of matches between these two teams. Yet, the captains know each other very well having played together for years. Yuvraj Singh, the Pune Warriros India captain has been the star of the World Cup. Sehwag, the Delhi Daredevils captain was the highest individual scorer in an innings of the tournament.
Delhi was humiliated by Mumbai Indians in first match, while Rajasthan Royals made a mockery of their bowling. Overall they need improvement in both areas.
Pune warrriors on the other hand had exceptional bowling performances in the last two matches, where first their bowlers humbled Kings XI and then the team performance saw Kochi Tuskers nailed.
For Delhi, Venugopal Rao is the highest scorer in both matches. But even if he has scored only 86 runs. He and Warner have scored two half-centuries for Delhi. Others including Sehwag, Finch and Irfan have failed to fire. Their bowlers have just managed to take 5 wickets in 2 matches. Their overall player’s performance is worrying.
For Pune Warriors, two wins prove that player’s performance is not much of a concern. Bowling trio of Parnell, Wagh and Thomas have rocked both opponents and bowlers have already taken 14 wickets in 2 matches besides some run outs. The concern area is their batting. Overall the team has managed the chase successfully but their leading scorer is Uthappa who has scored just 53 runs in 2 matches.
Who Will Win!
Delhi Daredevils should win it easily, unless Yuvraj decides and succeeds in leading from the front with bat at least, if not ball. DD needs a win desperately, but that is no free ticket to victory. Sehwag, Warner and Venugopal have appeared good against fast bowlers in the past. It can be their day today, and if they score a healthy total, their bowlers have the calibre to defend it. So far they have failed together, but it will take just one match to change the perception. The match against Warriors may be that lucky change for DD. Manish Pandey has completed his IPL ban of two matches. His return to the team on top order may boost the batting of Warriors.
Sehwag/Warner vs Warrior Trio
The opening duo of Delhi Daredevils is feaersome. But they have not clicked together as match winner. Warrior trio of Thomas, Bagh and Parnell have hunted in group so far and share 10 wickets among themselves in 2 matches. Yet, when it comes to the class of Sehwag and aggression of Warner, that might be too much for the trio to handle. The battle will decide the fate of the match too.
Yuvraj vs Delhi Bowlers
Yuvraj and Delhi bowlers, both have went unnoticed so far. While Yuvraj remained undefeated in the only opportunity he got to bat, Delhi Bowlers have failed to save a target of 150 plus also. Yet, the bowlers could not have got a better match to return in form. Warriors batting have lacked individual brilliance so far. Yuvraj will be the key man when Warriors bat. If Morkel, Irfan Pathan and van der Merwe can together sent him back early, the match belongs to Delhi Daredevils.
Batsman: Sehwag (Captain), Aaron Finch, Colin Ingram, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Naman Ojha (WK),
Allrounder: Travis Birt, Robert Frylinck, James Hopes, Irfan Pathan, Venugopal Rao,
Bowlers: Morne Morkel, Andrew McDonald, Roelof van der Merwe, Ajit Agarkar, Varun Aaron, Robin Bist, Unmukt Chand, Ajit Chandila, Ashok Dinda, Shahbaz Nadeem, Yogesh Nagar, Prashant Naik, Rajesh Pawar, Aavishkar Salvi, Sridharan Sriram, Vikas Mishra, Tejashwi Yadav, Umesh Yadav, Vivek Yadav
Batsman: Yuvraj Singh (Captain), Mitchell Marsh, Callum Ferguson, Tim Paine (WK), Graeme Smith, Manish Pandey, Eklavya Dwivedi, Abhishek Jhunjhunwala, Harshad Khadiwale, Mohnish Mishra, Robin Uthappa (WK)
Allrounder: Nathan McCullum, Angelo Mathews, Jesse Ryder, Mithun Manhas
Bowlers: Wayne Parnell, Jerome Taylor, Alfonso Thomas, Ashish Nehra, Imtiyaz Ahmed, Kamran Khan, Murali Kartik, Ganesh Gaikwad, Harpreet Singh, Dheeraj Jadhav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shrikant Mundhe, Sachin Rana, Rahul Sharma, Shrikant Wagh