Chennai, Apr 8 : Defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) faces a tough test at home when they face a rampaging Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the IPL T-20 match here on Tuesday, where all eyes would be on the big hitting West Indian Andre Russell.
The burly Jamaican has been the cynosure of all eyes in this IPL as he has single-handedly powered KKR to victory from seemingly losing situations, with his big hitting prowess. With the wicket once again expected to be on the slower side at the M A Chidambaram Stadium, the CSK's strategy to counter the onslaught of the flamboyant Russel, who could change the contest on its head in a matter of just one over, has been the talking point.
Apart from Russell, KKR openers Chris Lynn and left-hander Sunil Naraine, who were in top form, the experience of seasoned Robin Uthappa would also pose a threat to CSK, for whom offie Harbhajan Singh and Imran Tahir were the pick of the bowlers. Both the teams have four wins in five matches and KKR's flamboyant victory over Rajasthan Royals at Jaipur has propelled the team to the top of the table, with CSK in the second spot.
Buoyed by emphatic wins in the last two matches, KKR steps into Chepauk with its confidence high with local lad Dinesh Karthik, at the helm, leading the team for the first time at his home town, and knew the conditions very well. An interesting contest is in store as both the teams were loaded with quality spinners--Sunil Narine, Kuldeep Yadav and Piyush Chawla for KKR, 'Turbantor', Imran Tahir and Ravindra Jadeja for CSK--who would relish bowling here.
Shane Watson and Faf and Du Plessis would once again be keen to provide the start that CSK wanted, and skipper M S Dhoni, as expected, would give the prush in the death overs with a flourish, as he has done in the last three home matches.
Teams (from) :
CSK : M S Dhoni (captain and WK), Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Shane Watson, Faf du Plessis, Murali Vijay, Kedar Jadhav, Sam Billings, Ravindra Jadeja, Dhruv Shorey, Chaitanya Bishnoi, Rituraj Gaikwad, Dwayne Bravo, Karn Sharma, Imran Tahir, Harbhajan Singh, Mitchell Santner, Shardul Thakur, Mohit Sharma, K M Asif, Deepak Chahar, N Jagadeesan (wk), Scott Kuggeleign.
KKR : Dinesh Karthik (Captain and WK), Robin Uthappa, Chris Lynn, Shubman Gill, Andre Russell, Carlos Brathwaite, Sunil Narine, Piyush Chawla, Kuldeep Yadav, Nitish Rana, Nikhil Naik, Joe Denly, Shrikant Mundhe, Sandeep Warrier, Prasidh Krishna, Lockie Ferguson, Harry Gurney, K C Cariappa, Yarra Prithviraj. (UNI)