Pune Warriors and Kochi Tuskers both are fresh faces to the Indian Premier League. Both have played one match each in their opening edition. Both impressed, although one lost and other won. Who will come on top when they battle out in their first group match against each other!!
There is no cricketing history. But Kochi Tuskers have been in news since their inception due to wrong reasons. After all the confusions and extensions, they must feel lucky to have been finally playing in IPL. On the other hand, Pune Warriors got no chance to be in news, as they went off smoothly with team selection and other formalities. With Yuvraj Singh, the ex-captain of Kings XI Punjab at helm, they can boast off more experience.
When Kochi played their first match, they went on to score the highest score of the tournament, scoring 161/5. It surprised all, as the team was mor epopular as Bowler’s Academy. With the competitive score on baord, Kochi fans expected to taste victory in the first match itself, against Royal Challengers Bangalore as their team had lot of bowling options. But in the end AB de Villiers left them disappointed scoring unbeaten 54 runs in just 40 balls with one four and five clean sixes.
Yuvraj’s Team Pune Warriors played their first match against his ex-team Kings XI Punjab. His bowlers Thomas and Wagh got them the match even before they came to bat. If McLaren had not held his end for a quick unbeaten 51, Pune Warriors would not even have to chase triple figure. Ultimately they chased 113 runs in just 13.1 overs.
Which Fresher Will Win!
Many feel that Pune Warriors were lucky to have their first outing against the weak Kings XI Punjab, whereas Kochi Tuskers got a raw deal by playing Royal Challengers Bangalore, one of the toughest team of IPL, in their first match. Kochi lost, Pune won. Now, when they play against each other, if Kochi Tuskers win, the theories could be proved correct. Yet it will take another damaging spell from Yuvraj’s bowler to restrict the strong batting line-up of Kochi Tuskers to a low total.
Both the teams are balanced in batting. Yet, Pune Warriors hold an edge in bowling. They have already reduced Gilchrist, Shaun Marsh and others to a low score, whereas Kochi bowlers could not defend 162 despite having Muralitharan, RP Singh, Sreesanth in their bowling attack.
Yet, going by the batting composition, Kochi Tuskers should be able to test their first victory.
Yuvraj Vs Muralitharan
Muralitharan is the key bowler of Kochi Tuskers. If Yuvraj can handle him with ease, other batsmen can score healthy total. Both will be the key for their team’s chances.
Kochi Batting vs Wagh and Thomas
Both the Indian bowlers have already rocked Kings XI team. Riding on initial success, they will be eyeing for a repeat. But, the strong batting line-up of McCullum, Laxman, captain Mahela may be too tough a wall to penetrate in.
Pune Warrior Squad
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
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