IPL Match 13 Preview: RCB Set to Roll at Chennai

Chennai Super Kings and Royal Challengers Bangalore have fought an intense battle of 4 matches in the 2011 edition, till the final. They are even at group stage with 4 wins, but CSKs 3 wins in knockout tilt the Head-to-head balance in CSKs favor to 7-4, With mixed results so far in the current edition, both the strong teams need victory, badly if not desperately.

IPL 2011 Schedule and Results

History
Both have been phenomenal in IPL. While CSK is the most consistent team reaching knockout stage in all the four seasons, RCB had emerged as second best team after their forgettable first season. Between them they have always played tough matches with 92 run win by CSK against RCB being the most one-sided match in 9 clashes, while RCBs 8 wicket win is their best against CSK.

Head-to-Head CSK 7, RCB 4
2008

    CSK def RCB by 13 Runs
    RCB def CSK by 14 Runs

2009

    CSK def RCB by 92 Runs
    RCB def CSK by 2 Wickets
    CSK def RCB by 6 Wickets

2010

    RCB def CSK by 36 Runs
    CSK def RCB by 5 Wickets

2011

    CSK def RCB by 21 runs
    RCB def CSK by 8 wickets
    CSK def RCB by 5 wkts in Semifinal
    CSK def RCB by 58 runs in Final

2008 Performances
CSK won 9 and lost 7 before losing in the nail-biting final against Rajasthan Royals.
RCB had a forgettable year winning just 4 and losing 10 matches. Termed as test team of IPL they finished 2nd from the bottom.

2009 Performances
CSK Reached the semifinal where Royal Challengers knocked them out. They won 8, lost 6 and 1 match produced no result.
RCB’s best tournament, reaching the final, produced 9 wins and 7 losses for them.

2010 Performances
With 9 wins and 7 losses, CSK finally won the championship.
RCB finished 3rd winning and losing 8 matches each.

2011 Performances
Both registered 9 wins at group stage, but CSK lost 5 matches whereas RCB lost only 4 as one of their matches was washed off. CSK won the only playoff played, against RCB, while Challengers have played two playoffs, winning one against MI and losing against CSK.

RCB played maximum 3 matches at Knockout stage to reach the final, but lost 2 of them (both against CSK including the final) and won one against MI.

CSK played 2 matches at knockout and won comfortably (Both against RCB).

Overall IPL performance
CSK is the best team of IPL in terms of result, reaching knockout in all editions, and Fairplay also, winning Kingfisher Fairplay twice. RCB can be termed as 2nd best now, reaching the final twice and knockout thrice.

CSK has 38 wins and 29 losses with 1 abandoned match, whereas RCB has won 36 and lost 32 matches with 1 abandoned match.

Who Will Win Today
Considering the Chennai pitch and home team’s impressive record, CSK is favorite. But, the defeat against Mumbai Indians in the opening match have opened many chinks in their armor for all to see.

Muralitharan, ex-CSK player, may not be in any mood to forgive them for deserting him and his current form in 2 matches makes him very dangerous. Captain Vettori is also getting wickets when RCB needs the most, besides his highly economic spells. The due together with the good form of Vinay Kumar can be devastating for CSK batsmen.

While CSK bats deep, RCBs top 3 batsmen are destructive enough to compensate for the long tail. With Gayle and Kohli due for big innings, Chennai fans may get a surprise fireworks from opposite camp.

Overall, the better bowling unit makes RCB favorite to win.

Key Battles

    Gayle vs Ashwin

Last year Ashwin held the aces bamboozling threatening Gayle in the semifinal and final. Gayle must be aware of the Ashwin-threat and prepared for the renewed battle. The winner of the battle will decide the winner. Ashwin could not control Gayle during group stage match in 2011 and he single-handedly won them the match. A repeat is awaited.

    Muralitharan vs CSK

The ex-Super Kings man, Muralitharan must be delighted to play his first IPL team. Despite his successful stint for 3 years, CSK did not retain him. The payback time has come. With Murali in top form in the first two matches, the likes of Raina, Dhoni and Badrinath may find the situation not so pleasant. Dhoni may escape, but others are easy prey for him. His 4 overs with Vettori would be the deciding factor for the game.

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