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Will CSK continue its winning streak?

Saturday, September 18, 2021 • Tamil Sport News Comments
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The second leg of the cricket carnival IPL-2021 (abandoned midway in May, 2021 in view of COVID-19) gets underway Sunday at the picturesque Dubai cricket stadium in UAE. Defending champion Mumbai Indians take on former champions CSK in what is billed as a 'clash of champions' to give a befitting start to IPL-2 of the year. Surprising many, DC leads the points tally with 6 wins from 8 outings while CSK and RCB share the second spot with 5 wins each from their respective 7 games. CSK’s NRR is high, though. Always a perennial late-blooming side, MI is at the fourth spot with 4 wins from 7 matches and needs to do a lot of catching up. All teams except DC and PBKS have 7 more matches to play yet.

Time for MI to turn the clock around

Skippered by the 34-year old Rohit Sharma, who recently dazzled as a Test opener for India in the just concluded series in England, MI leads head-to-head clashes with CSK by a huge margin (20-13). Considered as stronger than many international teams, MI has the firepower in it to bounce back from any precarious situation. Lagging behind in points tally isn't new to MI; it had done so even during its title-winning years in the past but had gone on to win the trophy, belying statistics.

MI's all-round strength vs CSK’s veracity

If MI has the likes of Rohit, Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Pollard, Krunal Pandya, Bumrah and Boult, CSK has Suresh Raina, Ruturaj, Faf du Plessis, Ambati Rayudu, Dhoni, Jadeja, Bravo, ‘Oval Test’ hero Shardul Thakur, Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, Ngidi and the ever-dependable Deepak Chahar in its ranks. Like MI which has big-hitting match-winners, CSK has big-hitters as well as incisive bowlers to turn things around for it. The long lay-off from active cricket (except India-England Test players) might make things tough for both the teams. As the old adage goes, the team which performs better on a(ny) particular day would have the last laugh.

Players to watch

MI: 'Red-hot' Rohit and Bumrah plus Boult, Pollard, Ishan, Hardik, Yadav
CSK: Raina, Ruturaj, Moeen, Dhoni, Jadeja, Chahar, Shardul & Bravo

Let's enjoy the 'return of IPL' with the clash of the most-matched teams!

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