Super Kings Composed, Kochi look forward to Another Upset

Kochi Tuskers Kerala will play Chennai Super Kings and are eyeing a repeat of their last match performance. After tasking two defeats, Kochi has not only defeated one of the two strongest team of current IPL, but also managed to overcome exceptional performance of one of the great Indian players. Now, they are set to meet the other best team of IPL led by another great Indian player, Dhoni.

Kochi Tuskers, being a new team, have no history against Chennai Super Kings. Although as players there are lot to feel friendly and aggressive, as Kochi pocketed some players which till last IPL were centrepiece of IPL. For example, Muralitharan had played for CSK in the last 3 IPLs. Now, he will be appealing against his old team mate as a bowler of Tuskers.

2011 Performances
Chennai Super Kings had a balanced and composed tournament so far with 2 victories and 1 loss. The teams looks formiddable, although batting is ruled by Indians till now, except one performance from Hussey. They have snatched victory from the mouth of defeat against Kolkata Knight Riders in firtst match. Kings XI surprised them with the Yalthaty hammer, whereas against Royal Chalengers, the comfortable victory brought calm and composed look back on team member’s face.

Kochi, on the other hand, took time to adjust to the whims and fancies of IPL. The Tuskers failed to shine in the first two matches. Losing first to Royal Challengers Bangalore they were also drubbed by other fresher team, Pune Warriors India. Yet, the huge successful chase against Mumbai Indians, defying Tendulkar’s century is a major boost to them.

Player’s Performances
For Chennai, no individual has outshone others in player’s performance index in last three matches. Murali Vijay with 109 runs is the only one to reach triple figure. Dhoni follows him on 94 runs. Randiv with 4 wickets, Southee and Morkel with 3 wickets each have performed well.

For Kochi, McCullum and Jadeja have outshone others in player’s performance index in last three matches. McCullum has reached triple figure, Jadeja is placed second with 95 runs. None of the bowlers have been exceptional. Jadeja is also among the wickets.

Who Will Win!!
Considering last three matches, Kochi’s batting has always been good, but bowling is major concern. CSK on the other hand has no such issue. In fact, bowling and batting both look strengthened with Hussey and Bollinger available to play. CSK has an edge historically and on team strength. But, just going by player to player comparison, it appears Kochi holds edge over CSK.

Key Battles
Southee vs McCullum/Mahela
Southee has been so economical and attacking that even Bollinger has to wait on bench. McCullum and Mahela showed what a good team they can be if their players play in right positions. The contest will set the tempo of the game and decide the edge on field.

Muralitharan and Kochi Bowlers vs Hussey/Raina/Dhoni
Hussey is carrying his form from Australia. Dhoni appears in extraordinary form, but have been good only for cameos so far. Raina is yet to do anything substantial to make himself count. On the other hand, Kochi bowling so far has been ineffective. Muralitharan will be ready to make his old team regret not going the distance for him during auction. But, Raina and Dhoni both are good players of spin. Who will have the upper hand then!!

Jadeja/Hodge vs Ashwin/Jakati/Randiv
This will be the defining moment of the match. Jadeja and Hodge have paired well together. If the spin trio of CSK fails against both or one of them, CSK may have to pay for it with a defeat.

CSK Squad
Batsmen: Dhoni (Captain), Faf du Plessis, Michael Hussey, Srikkanth Anirudha, Subramaniam Badrinath, Wriddhiman Saha (WK), Murali Vijay
Allrounders: Dwayne Bravo, Albie Morkel, Scott Styris, Suresh Raina, Yo Mahesh
Bowlers: Tim Southee, Doug Bollinger, Ben Hilfenhaus, Suraj Randiv, Nuwan Kulasekara, George Bailey, Ravichandran Ashwin, Shadab Jakati, Joginder Sharma, Abhinav Mukund, Sudeep Tyagi, Kuthethurshri Vasudevadas, Ganapathi Vignesh

KTK 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 O’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

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