Match 35 – Chennai Super Kings V Royal Challengers Bangalore
We’re now entering the stage of the tournament where teams can’t afford to be complacent, even the most talented teams in this competition in the past have been caught napping which inevitably led to their downfall. Chennai are in a very similar situation, they’ve been one of the most impressive teams in IPL 11 sitting second on the standings, but just one win in their past three matches does give the impression that they’ve ever so slightly taken their foot of the accelerator. RCB on the other hand have displayed patchy-form throughout the tournament, not really looking like a major threat at any point but always in reach of the top four if they were to make a sudden surge.
To give you a good visualization of both teams situation in this game, the Royal Challengers are in desperate need of another win if they are to make a dash for the playoffs, but they’ve got a mountainous task standing in their way going by the name of the Chennai Super Kings who have dropped a couple games they should have one in recent times. If the Super Kings want to consolidate their spot in the 2018 playoffs fixture, they’re going to have to start stringing wins together again, a loss here could potentially open the door for Bangalore which could as a result of that makes things very interesting. West Indian all-rounder Dwayne Bravo’s going through a bit of a rough patch with the ball, he’s been smashed to all areas in his past two outings conceding an expensive 65 runs from just 4.4 overs without taking a single-wicket. That’s a good example of where the Super Kings have been trumped in their three losses, they consistently produce sizeable totals with the bat but haven’t been able to defend them due to a large portion of their bowling attack going for 10+ runs an over. They’ll continue to focus on their strengths for the time being though, if they’re not getting the job done with the ball it’s up to the area they excel in to get them over the line which is clearly their batting line-up. Skipper MS Dhoni has been in scintillating form with the willow, he’s currently averaging 82.25 with that constant ability to finish off an innings with some devastating blows.
The Royal Challengers are going to find it extremely difficult to restrict a star-studded Chennai Super Kings batting line-up on home soil, not many (if any) teams have pulled it off so far in IPL 11 which suggests that they’ll have to go head-to-head with Chennai in the batting department if they want to make a game of it. Despite the solid performances of Tim Southee, Umesh Yadav and Mohammed Siraj who all claimed two wickets each against Mumbai on Tuesday, expect those figures to read very-differently after the Super Kings have had a crack at RCB’s bowling unit. Expect to see a batting standoff between the two teams, and luckily for Bangalore they have the ammunition to challenge the Super Kings at their own game with notable superstars such as Virat Kohli, Quinton de Kock, Brendon McCullum and AB de Villiers who has been declared fit for tomorrow’s game in Pune. Given the importance of this match, surely RCB will play both Brendon McCullum and AB de Villiers in the same team, playing a side as talented as Chennai with the bat just about calls for multiple X factors like those two who can turn a game on its head in a matter of overs. This game is basically hyped around which team can dispatch the most amount of sixes into the crowd, with so much hitting-power on display it should be an entertaining game of cricket!
Top 5 fantasy picks | Chennai Super Kings | 35th match | Pune
- MS Dhoni
- Suresh Raina
- Shane Watson
- Lungi Ngidi
- Ambati Rayudu
Wildcard pick – Harbhajan Singh
Top 5 fantasy picks | Royal Challengers Bangalore | 35th match | Pune
- Virat Kohli
- AB de Villiers
- Umesh Yadav
- Brendon McCullum
- Yuzvendra Chahal
Wildcard pick – Mandeep Singh
Chennai Super Kings (possible) – 1. Shane Watson 2. Faf du Plessis 3. Suresh Raina 4. Ambati Rayudu 5. MS Dhoni (c & wk) 6. Ravindra Jadeja 7. Dwayne Bravo/David Willey 8. Karn Sharma 9. Harbhajan Singh 10. KM Asif 11. Lungi Ngidi.
Royal Challengers Bangalore (possible) – 1. Manan Vohra 2. Quinton de Kock (wk) 3. Brendon McCullum 4. Virat Kohli © 5. AB de Villiers 6. Mandeep Singh 7. Washington Sundar/Murugan Ashwin 8. Tim Southee 9. Umesh Yadav 10. Yuzvendra Chahal 11. Mohammed Siraj.
Match 36 – Sunrisers Hyderabad V Delhi Daredevils
Usually when first place comes up against sixth place on the IPL points table, you’re considerably leaning towards the competition leaders who are outright-favourites to take care of their lowly-placed opposition. That appears to be the situation tomorrow night when Hyderabad hosts Delhi, but don’t go putting all of your winnings on Hyderabad without a notice of warning, the Daredevils are proving to be extremely competitive in this second half of the tournament and could just about run over the Sunrisers if they’re not switched on.
Ever since he returned from that elbow injury against Punjab, Shikhar Dhawan has lost his firepower at the top of the order scoring just 22 runs in his past three innings which is a big concern for Hyderabad approaching the second-half of the tournament. Regardless of Dhawan’s poor-form with the willow, the Sunrisers have managed to rack up three-consecutive wins after back-to-back losses saw them in danger of unravelling all their good work in IPL 11. New Zealand’s Kane Williamson has elevated his T20 game to new heights in this seasons IPL, his captaincy has been superb whilst his individual efforts with the bat have been instrumental in his team’s success in 2018. Williamson has been by far Hyderabad’s best performer with the bat in IPL 11, currently sitting on 322 runs from eight matches along with four fifties to top of a fantastic run. They’ve had a number of individuals chip in with some really important cameo-knocks such as Manish Pandey, Shakib Al Hasan and Yusuf Pathan, but it’s been the skipper who has worked overtime to get his team in a winning position each & every time. Underrated Indian quick Sandeep Sharma has been extremely unlucky not to feature in the Sunrisers XI regularly, every time he’s been called upon to do a job for them he hasn’t let them down. The reason for that stems from the fact that Hyderabad have a really promising bowling unit in 2018 with a wide-variety of genuine wicket takers, they’re still waiting on the return of star seamer Bhuvneshwar Kumar as well.
Credit when credit is due, after another mediocre-start to the IPL the Delhi Daredevils have somehow managed to turn their fortunes around for the better winning two of their past three matches when all hope seemed lost six games into the tournament. The moment Gautam Gambhir stepped down as captain and exited the side, Delhi transformed into this whole new team that was willing to take on anyone at all costs, and it’s been intoxicating-viewing to say the least. Leading this newly-reinvigorated Daredevils outfit, Shreyas Iyer has been a man possessed and looks to have settled into life as a captain relatively easy as he continues to pump out a considerable amount of runs each game. A stat reflective of his dominance would have to come from his last five innings in IPL 11, in that time Iyer has averaged 66.25 with just one score below fifty which was against Chennai, amazing stuff. The second of the young guns is stepping it up as well, Rishabh Pant’s past two innings consists of 79 & 69 as the youthful Indian-duo continue to threaten as the tournament progresses. Add teenager Prithvi Shaw into that mix and you’ve got an inform-trio of Indian youth that continues to light up the IPL as they continue to resurrect the Daredevils 2018 campaign. Black Caps quick Trent Boult has been the backbone of their bowling attack in IPL 11, arguably the best strike bowler in this seasons competition Boult has collected 13 wickets at an average of 23.07. The one concern for Delhi is Glenn Maxwell’s form slump, the all-rounder’s averaging just 16.37 and has only been bowling one over a game in recent times.
Top 5 fantasy picks | Sunrisers Hyderabad | 36th match | Hyderabad
- Kane Williamson
- Rashid Khan
- Sandeep Sharma
- Alex Hales
- Bhuvneshwar Kumar
Wildcard pick – Yusuf Pathan
Top 5 fantasy picks | Delhi Daredevils | 36th match | Hyderabad
- Trent Boult
- Shreyas Iyer
- Rishabh Pant
- Amit Mishra
- Prithvi Shaw
Wildcard pick – Vijay Shankar
Sunrisers Hyderabad (possible) – 1. Alex Hales 2. Shikhar Dhawan 3. Kane Williamson © 4. Manish Pandey 5. Shakib Al Hasan 6. Yusuf Pathan 7. Wriddhiman Saha (wk) 8. Rashid Khan 9. Bhuvneshwar Kumar/Basil Thampi 10. Sandeep Sharma 11. Siddarth Kaul.
Delhi Daredevils (possible) – 1. Prithvi Shaw 2. Colin Munro/Jason Roy 3. Shreyas Iyer © 4. Rishabh Pant (wk) 5. Vijay Shankar 6. Glenn Maxwell/Dan Christian 7. Liam Plunkett/Chris Morris 8. Amit Mishra 9. Shahbaz Nadeem 10. Avesh Khan/Harshal Patel 11. Trent Boult.
Zak Varik is an Australian columnist/writer who specializes in the sports category cricket. With over four years of experience covering all sorts of cricket tournaments around the world, Zak has gained extensive knowledge in International cricket as well as domestic.
“I’ve loved watching cricket since I was about 7 years old, my childhood hero was none other than Andrew “Roy” Symonds who probably enhanced my love of the game through the years”.
Zak is now an established writer for FCN (Fantasy Cricket News) and has also previously represented other Blogs during his time as a writer.