Delhi Daredevils meets Kochi Tuskers again in three days in the ridiculously planned back-to-back matches. This is the 3rd instance of teams playing back-to-back matches within 2-3 days gap. Tusker are looking for revenge as well as to get back to much-needed winning ways to stay alive for the knockout race.
Both have played once, in current edition. Delhi emerged winner when Sehwag led them from the front, and bowlers joined him in helping DD win.
When Kochi played their first match, they went on to score the highest score of the tournament, scoring 161/5. But Bangalore batsmen chased it. Even Pune Warriors defeated them in the same fashion. But, against Mumbai Indians they realised their batting strength and decided to chase, and earned their first victory. Against Chennai Super Kings also they earned easy victory chasing a high score. Against Knight Riders, Kochi bowlers earned a remarkable victory defending low target. Kochi batsmen failed miserably in the absence of Brendum McCullum and Rajasthan Royals thumped them. Against Deccan Chargers, they reached another low by scoring third lowest total of IPL and losing the match, which they should have won. They lost the last match against DD.
Delhi Daredevils had their own problem. First Mumbai Indians sent them to school by blowing them away with Malinga Special that led DD score their second below 100 score in IPL. When it appeared against Royals they will have some clue, Warne’s boys also scored clinical thumping victory. Being at bottom, when hopes were about to shatter completely, Daredevils registered emphatic victory over tournament topper Pune Warriors India. But against Deccan Chargers, they played an ordinary game and lost due to poor bowling. But against the rampant Kings XI, DD won the high-scoring match. But, when they were expected to surge ahead, they lost the see-saw battle against RCB. They lost another close battle against KKR when their batsmen succumbed in the low chase. They thumped Kochi Tuskers when they met few days before.
Kochi’s player’s performance index shows McCullum, Jadeja, Hodge and captain Mahela in tremendous forum. Even Hodge has joined the 100-club now, and Parthiv Patel is just 2-run short of reaching triple figure. Bowlers had a decent performance with 32 wickets in 8 matches.
For Delhi, player’s performance index is showing improvement. Sehwag is just 7-runs away from Orange Cap. Warner and Venugopal are also in the 200-club, while Hopes has entered 100-run club now. Other batsmen are still to give good scores. Their bowlers have been impressive in the last few matches, taking 42 wickets in 8 matches.
Who Will Win Today!!
Kochi needs to bounce, not just to take revenge but also to stay alive in the competition. Delhi Daredevils can consider home advantage. Kochi’s batting is getting worse, and DD’s batting, specially Sehwag, is showing remarkable improvement. In fact now in the later half of tournament, DD is playing as a team. That is dangerous not only for Kochi but for all.
Sehwag vs Kochi Bowlers
Sehwag is the key, if Delhi has to win. Only a big score from him can get them the high runs on board where their wayward bowlers can somehow save the game. Sehwag may shine considering his more responsible approach towards his batting seeing that his team’s batting is not clicking, except the game against Kings XI.
McCullum vs Morkel
McCullum has won some good matches for Kochi. He is the highest scorer in an inning of IPL also. But in the last few matches he has got out cheaply. Morkel is the key bowler who will be assigned the job to take out McCullum. If that happens Delhi is in for a good chance. Otherwise none can save them.
Jadeja vs Venugopal
Both players have been good revelation of Indian player’s strength. Both are searching a place in India XI and both have shown some good performance, specially Jadeja whose sixes have been the talk of the IPL. Their team’s middle order depends on them and one of them will be the key to their team’s victory today.
Kochi Tuskers Kerala Squad
Batsman: Mahela Jayawardene (captain), Michael Klinger, Brendon McCullum (WK), Owais Shah, VVS Laxman, Kedar Jadhav, Chandan Madan, Parthiv Patel (WK), Yashpal Singh
Allrounder: John Hastings, Brad Hodge, Steve Oâ€™Keefe, Thisara Perera, Steven Smith, Ravindra Jadeja,
Bowlers: Muttiah Muralitharan, Sreesanth, Ramesh Powar, RP Singh, Vinay Kumar, Balachandra Akhil, Balachandra Akhil, Deepak Chougule, Gnaneswara Rao, Raiphi Gomez, Sushant Marathe, Prasanth Padmanabhan, Tanmay Srivastava
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