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The Pepsi IPL 2013 Caravan will make its first appearance in Mohali when Kings XI Punjab host the formidable Chennai Super Kings.
A clinical performance saw the Kings XI Punjab register a convincing eight-wicket victory in their season opener against Pune Warriors India. They will be keen to build on that early confidence, especially playing in their own backyard.
The Chennai Super Kings meanwhile suffered a setback at the hands of Mumbai Indians in their tournament opener. The two-time champions, who are known to be slow starters, will be keen to get their first points on the board in this fixture.
Wednesday, April 10, 2013, 8 p.m
Punjab Cricket Association Stadium, Mohali
MS Dhoni revived what looked like a lost cause in the match against the Mumbai Indians. The skipper looked in good-hitting form and that bodes well for the two-time champions. Among the game’s best finishers, Dhoni has resisted suggestions asking for him to bat up the order. Albie Morkel’s arrival has further bolstered the CSK squad – though his participation is in doubt after he suffered an ankle injury in his last T20 match back home. In Suresh Raina and R Ashwin, CSK have two established performers in T20 cricket, and a lot will ride on their performances too.
The 19-year old Manan Vohra impressed with his temperament and choice of shots in his team’s win over Pune Warriors India. The teenager will be keen to build on the reputation he established in that match. Adam Gilchrist, who said he’d trained a lot harder in the run-up to IPL VI, looked to be hitting the ball well and even muscled a couple of shots in his team’s season opener. He and David Hussey are the two other important names in the KXIP batting line-up.
The Chennai Super Kings have an edge over the Kings XI Punjab in contests between the two teams. Off the ten meetings between the two teams, CSK have won six while KXIP won three. The other contest ended in a tie after 40 overs and KXIP edged past CSK in the Super Over.
Last season, KXIP defeated CSK in both the league fixtures; they clinched a thriller by seven runs at Chennai and then convincingly defeated CSK by six wickets at Dharamsala.
David Hussey is the second-most capped player in T20 cricket. The 35-year old has so far appeared in 199 T20 matches and has scored 4829 runs (which is the third highest aggregate in T20 cricket).
Kings XI Punjab will head across to Jaipur for their clash against the Rajasthan Royals on April 14. The Chennai Super Kings will head back home to host their neighbours Royal Challengers Bangalore on April 13.
Two-time champions Chennai Super Kings will be keen to get a win under their belt when the face off against Kings XI Punjab at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium. The MS Dhoni-led side come to Mohali on the back of a loss to the Mumbai Indians in Chennai, but are a side that are known for their ability to come from behind and pull a rabbit out of the hat.
While addressing the media ahead of the game, all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, who has been in superb form in the past season, said that the loss hasn’t had too much of an impact on the team’s morale with 15 matches still to be played in the Pepsi Indian Premier League 2013.
“Everyone is positive about the tournament and have been preparing well. Although we lost the last match we had fought hard. Mahi bhai (MS Dhoni) played a very good innings to take the game to the last over. This is a long tournament and it will be too early to say anything right now as there are still 15 matches to go in the league phase. We will try not to repeat the mistakes in the next match and make a strong comeback," he said.
When asked about the opposition, Kings XI Punjab, and the composition of the team, a team that does not have big names in the line-up, but possess a good bunch of domestic players, Jadeja said, “I don’t think having or not having big names (in a team) matters much in the twenty20 format, because in this format whoever plays well on the day will do well. In the end, it is one or two overs that turn out to be crucial to the game and make all the difference. For example if one team scores big runs in an over or a team takes couple of wickets in an over, that changes the complexion of the game. So the nature of the game is such that on a given day whichever team has batted well or has had good day in the field with the ball wins the game.”
The left-arm spinner who enjoyed huge success with the ball in the recently concluded Test series against Australia is eager to take the field. Asked if he has to make changes to his bowling, if at all with the change if format when he takes the field, Jadeja explained, “There is not much that you change per say but since these are two very different formats, you discuss within the team and strategise about how and what to bowl.
There isn’t much time to think on field with just four overs to bowl. In this format you don’t think too much about taking wickets because if you go for wickets there are chances that you will concede runs. Therefore one has to plan for a batsman keeping in mind his areas of weakness and strengths and then execute it.”
When asked if he was glad to play once again at the PCA”, he said, “It always feels good to play here. The ground and the facilities are very good. The feel of the place, like when we recently played a Test match here against Australia which we won in four days felt good. This time we are playing a game of twenty20 cricket and it is a different team. Whatever format, you come to play here and one gets a good feeling at this venue. So it feels good that we have back so soon in a matter of about couple of weeks to play here again. So we will try to perform well and win here tomorrow.”