(Cricket News) Delhi Capitals lost their first five games but they used their experience to change their fortune to win four out of the five games after that and are now in with a shot of joining the mid-table battle for that elusive 3rd and 4th spot. The Capitals are still last on the points table but are only three-point behind third-placed Lucknow SuperGiants. For the Capitals it is a must win game against the Chennai Super Kings, something they have failed to do over the years.
DC have beaten CSK in Chennai only twice in eight matches; their last win came in 2010. A big reason behind the Capitals’ revival has been their upturn in the form of their spinners as Kuldeep Yadav and Axar Patel have bowled brilliantly together and have restricted their opposition to a lower target. Both the left-arm spin duo have been the most economical amongst all teams in the competition going at 6.9 an over as they will be the key on a Chepauk surface that shows signs of turn.
CSK have won 17 of the 27 games over the years against DC will at Chepauk this year, though, they have been patchy, having won three and lost two so far.CSK’s top order is one of the best in the league led by, Devon Conway who has scored 458 runs at a strike rate of 139.20 while Ruturaj Gaikwad is not far behind with 384 at a strike rate of 148.26. Shivam Dube (290 at 156.75) and Ajinkya Rahane (245 at 181.48) in the middle order provide the ebbing flow of runs. CSK have the joint-best power play scoring rate of 9.5 this season and have recorded 50-plus scores in eight out of ten matches this IPL
Ben Stokes is fit but CSK can slot him into the lineup considering their overseas players – Conway, Moeen Ali, Matheesha Pathirana and Maheesh Theekshana have been doing well. As for the impact player Ambati Rayudu has been used as a substitute, replacing one of the bowlers when they chase, and that trend is going to continue. He usually replaces Tushar Deshpande or Theekshana in the second innings.
CSK probable XII: 1 Devon Conway, 2 Ruturaj Gaikwad, 3 Ajinkya Rahane, 4 Ambati Rayudu, 5 Shivam Dube, 6 Moeen Ali, 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 MS Dhoni (capt, wk), 9 Deepak Chahar, 10 Maheesh Theekshana, 11 Matheesha Pathirana, 12 Tushar Deshpande
Capitals over the past matches have found a winning combination and don’t want to tinker with the teams as they have followed a straightforward batter-for-bowler swap. Ripal Patel or Sarfaraz Khan start and then Ishant Sharma comes in and vice-versa. Anrich Nortje will be unavailable as he had to fly back to South Africa following a personal emergency as DC might replace him with Khaleel Ahmed or Lalit Yadav in the playing XI.
Capitals probable XII: 1 Phil Salt (wk), 2 David Warner (capt), 3 Mitchell Marsh 4 Rilee Rossouw, 5 Aman Hakim Khan, 6 Manish Pandey, 7 Axar Patel, 8 Ripal Patel/Sarfaraz Khan, 9 Khaleel Ahmed/Lalit Yadav, 10 Kuldeep Yadav, 11 Mukesh Kumar 12 Ishant Sharma