Arun Gopalakrishnan in Mumbai 16 April 2014 - 09:09pm IST
Preview: Match 2 – DD v RCB
New look Daredevils take on strong RCB line-up
The Delhi Daredevils and Royal Challengers Bangalore open their Pepsi IPL 2014 campaign by clashing against each other in Match 2 of the season.
The Delhi Daredevils finished at the floor of the table last season and come into this tournament as a completely revamped outfit. The franchise owners will be hoping this overhaul results in a positive change of fortunes.
RCB have been a hugely entertaining side and play an energetic and exciting brand of cricket. However, they have failed to capitalize on a handful of critical moments and as a result have narrowly missed out on Playoff berths the last couple of seasons. Apart from comprising some aggressive batsmen who have caused a lot of damage around the world, the team has some very experienced hands in the bowling department and will be hoping to go the distance this time around.
Thursday, April 17, 2014, 8 pm IST
Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah
One can expect plenty of fireworks in this match, for you will possibly not see a greater number of destructive batsmen in one match.
The Delhi Daredevils suffered a body blow on the eve of the match when skipper Kevin Pietersen was ruled out because of an injury to his finger. However, in Ross Taylor, JP Duminy, Murali Vijay and Dinesh Karthik they have players who have shown that they are capable of inflicting lots of damage at the international level. DD will also expect runs from the two Tiwary’s – Manoj and Saurabh – as well as from the youngsters – Quinton de Kock and Kedar Jadhav.
RCB have a daunting batting line-up – perhaps the most formidable looking one in the competition – Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers, Virat Kohli and the recently-acquired million-dollar man, Yuvraj Singh. With such a line-up, and the likes of Albie Morkel for support, the team should back itself to chase down any kind of target or post enough runs on the board to put the target beyond the reach of the opposition.
Numbers certainly indicate that Royal Challengers Bangalore hold an edge in their contests against the Delhi Daredevils. Not only do they have a 6-5 win-loss record against DD, but they have won each of their last five contests.
On both occasions that these teams met last season, RCB held their nerves to edge past their opponents. In the first meeting in Bengaluru, RCB prevailed in the Super Over after both teams had finished with the same number of runs at the end of regulation time. In the subsequent outing in Delhi, RCB edged home by four runs despite posting 183 runs on the board.
RCB have five batsmen in their line-up who have struck more than 100 sixes in T20 cricket. For the record, there are only 46 players who have hit 100 or more sixes in T20 cricket around the world.
RCB’s Chris Gayle holds the record for scoring the most runs in T20 cricket (5992), scoring the most centuries in the format (11) and hitting the most sixes in the 20-over format (523). His teammate Albie Morkel is the most capped player in the T20 format with 260 total appearances.
This match will feature the two most expensive players purchased at the 2014 IPL Player Auction. The Royal Challengers Bangalore signed Yuvraj Singh for INR 14 Crores, while the Delhi Daredevils bought Dinesh Karthik for INR 12.5 Crores.
Dinesh Karthik has an impressive record as captain in T20 cricket; of the 15 matches he has captained, his team has gone on to win 12.
Both teams will be seen in action next on April 19. Virat Kohli and co. will clash with the defending champions, Mumbai Indians, in the 4pm game, while the Delhi Daredevils will take on the Kolkata Knight Riders later in the evening.