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Match 63 of DLF IPL 2012 features the defending champions, Chennai Super Kings, taking on the Kolkata Knight Riders.
A win for KKR in this contest would quell any existing possibilities of them not making it to the playoffs and firm up their chances of finishing among the top two in the league. The Chennai Super Kings (contenders for a place in the playoffs) will be among the first teams to finish their league season. It will serve them well to win both their remaining matches and decide their fate on their own terms rather than leave it to permutations and combinations from results of other contenders’ matches.
While KKR come into this contest after suffering a 27-run defeat at the hands of the Mumbai Indians, the Chennai Super Kings will look to carry forward the momentum from their nine-wicket thrashing of the Delhi Daredevils.
Monday, May 14, 2012, 08:00 p.m.
Eden Gardens, Kolkata
It wouldn’t be wrong to say that Kolkata Knight Riders’ successful campaign has been built on the performances of their skipper Gautam Gambhir and spinner Sunil Narine. Gambhir has had an incredible run since taking the decision to open the innings; he had scored more than 20 in seven consecutive innings (and converted four of those to half-centuries) before falling for naught in the previous match against the Mumbai Indians. Sunil Narine has been on a different plane altogether; apart from taking 15 wickets – the most by a KKR bowler – he has also strangled the opposition, conceding runs at an economy rate of 5.47.
Keep an eye on Murali Vijay and Suresh Raina to do the bulk of the damage especially since they bat in the top order. Vijay, after a poor start to the tournament – which resulted in him getting dropped for a few games – has shown signs of form in the last few matches. He looked in good nick in the previous match against the Delhi Daredevils when he scored a fluent 48. Raina has had several starts this season, but is yet to play a match-winning innings. Given the importance of this match, expect him to come up with something special.
Also keep an eye on CSK’s Ben Hilfenhaus. After conceding 14 runs off his last three deliveries in a thriller against the Mumbai Indians, the Australian has come back strongly to pick up Man-of-the-Match awards in two consecutive matches. Previous Meetings
The Chennai Super Kings have a 5-3 win-loss record from their nine meetings against the Kolkata Knight Riders (with one fixture in Cape Town washed out by showers).
When these teams have met at the Eden Gardens, it is the visitors who’ve fared better than the hosts. CSK have beaten KKR in two of the three matches at the Eden Gardens. However, KKR hold the edge going into this contest having beaten the defending champions in their last two games. Trivia
The Chennai Super Kings have only managed four half-centuries this season; Faf du Plessis scored three fifties, while S Badrinath scored 57 against the Pune Warriors India.
Among players who’ve bowled 100 overs or more in Twenty20 cricket, Sunil Narine’s economy rate of 5.15 is second best to Trinidad & Tobago’s Samuel Badree. What next?
The Kolkata Knight Riders will be seen in action next at the Wankhede Stadium on May 16 when they take on the Mumbai Indians. The Chennai Super Kings, meanwhile, will turn up at the hill station of Dharamsala where they will take on Kings XI Punjab on May 17.
Match 62 of DLF IPL 2012 will feature two teams that are still in contention for a place in the playoffs; Mumbai Indians, with 16 points from 13 matches sit slightly higher than the Royal Challengers Bangalore (15 points from 13 matches) in the points table. A win for MI here could propel them to second place in the standings, while an RCB win will see them displace their opponents from their current third position.
Despite all their riches, both teams haven’t been as dominant as one had expected them to be. However, with most of the pieces falling into place, both teams have started to look the part. And given how closely teams are packed in the race for the playoffs, expect both these sides to come out all guns blazing.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore come into this contest with the confidence of three consecutive victories behind them, while the Mumbai Indians caused an upset of sorts in their previous match by beating the formidable Kolkata Knight Riders in their own backyard. When
Monday, May 14, 2012, 04:00 p.m.
M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru
Look no further than Chris Gayle for the one player who’s influenced RCB’s fortunes the most. Since joining the RCB squad midway through last season, the Jamaican has contributed close to a third of the runs scored by his team (the number shoots up to 36 percent in matches RCB have gone on to win). The other fact that best illustrates Gayle’s influence in RCB’s success is the fact that he’s won 10 Man-of-the-Match awards in the 24 matches he’s played for the team.
Rohit Sharma’s unbeaten 109, in the previous match against the Kolkata Knight Riders, was ample evidence that he is immensely talented. He’s been lacking consistency and the temperament to win matches. The Mumbai Indians management will be hoping the 25-year-old can take a lot of confidence from that century and play many more such innings in the future.
For the Mumbai Indians to unleash their force, they need big contributions from Sachin Tendulkar too. The Little Master has managed only one half-century in nine innings this season. With a lot riding on these last few matches, expect Tendulkar to step up to the party.
The head-to-head between the Royal Challengers Bangalore and the Mumbai Indians stands at five matches apiece. Interestingly though, whenever these two teams have met in Bangalore, it has been the visitors who’ve emerged victors.
In the three meetings between the two teams at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore, the Mumbai Indians have registered convincing wins; in IPL 2008 and IPL 2011, they registered nine-wicket wins, while in IPL 2010 they handed the hosts a 57-run thrashing.
In the most recent meeting between these two teams – at the Wankhede Stadium on May 9 – the visitors cruised to a nine-wicket victory in their chase of 142. Trivia
Chris Gayle has won 10 Man-of-the-Match awards in the 24 matches he’s played for the Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Chris Gayle also holds the record for the most 50-plus scores in Twenty20 cricket; he’s scored 26 half-centuries and seven centuries. What next?
In three days time (on May 17) the Royal Challengers Bangalore will be seen in action at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium when they square off against the Delhi Daredevils. The Mumbai Indians, meanwhile, host the Kolkata Knight Riders on May 16.