Good planning and clarity of roles can often bring confidence and favourable results for sports teams. Nine games into their IPL 2022 campaign, Chennai Super Kings finally look like they know what they are doing – though the sample size is just one match – and it has coincided with the return of their Thala at the helm.
Come Wednesday, MS Dhoni’s men will be up against Royal Challengers Bangalore, who are at sixth place with five wins from ten matches. They have been patchy, but have the personnel. A slip-up against them could well end the defending champions’ faint hopes of qualifying for the playoffs.
An unfit Bravo was forced to miss Super Kings’ game against Sunrisers. If he is available on Wednesday, spin allrounder Mitchell Santner might make way for him. In case Moeen Ali is fit – he started training after a layoff a couple of days ago – there might be another option for Super Kings. Royal Challengers are unlikely to change their playing XI.
Chennai Super Kings: 1 Ruturaj Gaikwad, 2 Devon Conway, 3 Robin Uthappa, 4 Ambati Rayudu, 5 MS Dhoni (capt & wk), 6 Ravindra Jadeja, 7 Moeen Ali/Dwayne Bravo/Mitchell Santner, 8 Dwaine Pretorius, 9 Maheesh Theekshana, 10 Simarjeet Singh, 11 Mukesh Choudhary
Royal Challengers Bangalore: 1 Faf du Plessis (capt), 2 Virat Kohli, 3 Rajat Patidar, 4 Glenn Maxwell, 5 Shahbaz Ahmed, 6 Mahipal Lomror, 7 Dinesh Karthik (wk), 8 Wanindu Hasaranga, 9 Harshal Patel, 10 Mohammed Siraj, 11 Josh Hazlewood
Relieved of captaincy duties, Ravindra Jadeja bowled in tandem with Sri Lankan spinner Maheesh Theekshana in the middle overs and conceded only 15 runs from his 18 balls against Sunrisers. He will be crucial especially against Glenn Maxwell. Jadeja has dismissed Maxwell seven out of the 13 times they have met in the IPL, with Maxwell averaging just 10.1. Jadeja has also removed Kohli thrice in 16 T20s and has brought his strike rate down to 108.