IPL 2012 Preview: Match 51 to Decide the Table Topper

Playing the 51st match of the tournament, DD and KKR are leading the Points Table. The second match between them in 2012 will be more of academic interest, as both have nothing at stake. If KKR takes revenge of the loss in the rain-curtailed match at home, they will jump to the top of table. But, at Viru’s home, can KKR do the unthinkable!!

History
Both have met 8 times. They have seen one match abandoned between them whereas in remaining 6 matches DD leads 4-3.

Head-to-Head: DD 4, KKR 3
2008

    KKR def DD by Lost 23 R
    No Result

2009

    DD def KKR by 9 Wickets
    DD def KKR by 7 Wickets

2010

    DD def KKR by 40 Runs
    KKR def DD by 14 Runs

2011

    KKR def DD 17 runs

2012

    DD won by 8 wkts

IPL Performances
DD has reached semifinal in 2008 and 2009, but failed to complete a hattrick of semifinals in 2010. 2011 saw them finishing at the bottom among the 10 teams. In 2008 and 2010 they won 7 and lost 7 matches, but in 2008 they have one abandaoned match also. In 2009 they won 9 and lost only 7. In 2011, they could win only 4 and lost 9, drawing 1.

KKR, finally reached the knockout, in 2011. In 2008 they had 6 Win, 7 Losses, 1 No Result against DD. In 2009 they Won 3, Lost 10 and again had 1 No Result. In 2010 they had the best performance with 7 Wins and 7 Losses. Finishing fourth in 2011, KKR won 8, lost 7 including the Eliminator level loss.

Overall Performance
DD has won 35 and lost 32, with two matches ending in no result. KKR has improves from having the worst record of last IPL, with semifinal entry in 2011. They have played for 31 Wins, 35 Losses and 3 No Result.

Who Will Win Today!!
The Knights have a problem of plenty, while DDs bowling looks jaded. Amidst the emotional battles of long-time team mates Sehwag and Gambhir, and Pathan brothers playing against each other, the match would be the testing ground for captains as both have been the vice-captains of India, and failed to impress at IPL level.

Sehwag again is the key for Delhi Daredevils. Nothing has changed in DD camp since IPL began in 2008. DD can be renamed Sehwag easily. It is high time that international players of the likes of Mahela Jayawardene and Ross Taylor show result of the confidence Sehwag has shown in them. David Warner may be preferred over Andre Russell, although Russell should get an opportunity before Playoffs.

The bowling unit of Morne Morkel, Agarkar, Irfan Pathan, Umesh Yadav have emerged as the best hunter so far of IPL. Yet they need some rest, good if that happenes before the PlayOffs start.

Key Battles
Russell/DD vs Narine
If Russell gets an opportunity, he would be hungry to perform. The men from Carribeans are the hot cakes of the tournament. Narine has been almost unbeatable with ball, while Russell is big hitter, useful bowler and one of the best fielder. Their performances will play a crucial role in their team’s fate. Narine can stop Sehwag and Delhi. Russel can hit KKRs extraordinary bowling unit out of park.

Sehwag vs Gambhir
Both have been playing together since ages. Since 2011 they are captaining different IPL teams. Gambhir excelled, Sehwag fought a lone battle. Now, again they stand against each other with the same motive. The emotional battle may not have a winner, but the match needs the winner. Gambhir knows, just having a better team is not enough to stop the destroyer Sehwag as they have already lost the first game.

At individual level also, both are contesting to get past Rahane and grab Orange Cap. Both are on a spree to hit half-centuries. Sehwag with 445 runs needs just 19 runs while Gambhir with 421 runs need to get past Rahane, Sehwag and Gayle to grab the Orange Cap. The winner between them will lead his team to victory too.

I Pathan vs Y Pathan
The Pathan brothers are known to the entire world now. Both have been useful cogs for their IPL teams too, but in the past. After leaving their respective clubs, Kings XI and Rajasthan Royals, both have been living on their past glory. While Irfan has bowled well in the established DD bowling lne up, and was instrumental in defeating his brother Yusuf’s team KKR in their first match, Yusuf may like to settle the score. Besides that Yusuf is lucky to have got the confidence of KKR management for 11 matches without being dropped despite poor performance. Everyone is awaiting his getting back to form. Against DD, his team needs him the most.

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