All-time meetings: Kings XI Punjab W6, Chennai Super Kings W9
THE TEAM NEWS
KINGS XI PUNJAB
Coach: Brad Hodge
Captain: Ravichandran Ashwin
The Kings XI are coming off a loss to Royal Challengers Bangalore after posting a total of 155 and that total proved to be nowhere near enough as the class of RCB saw them chase that down in the final over for the loss of six wickets.
It was an inconsistent batting performance from the Kings XI as KL Rahul was prominent once again with a 30-ball 47, but from there it was not pretty viewing. Superstar Aaron Finch fell first ball and veteran Yuvraj Singh may struggle to keep his spot scoring just four runs after scoring twelve in the first match.
Unfortunately, Mohit Sharma had a match to forget with the fast bowler conceding nearly 13 runs per over and not capturing a wicket in comparison to all other Kings XI bowlers going for less than 8rpo, and with Ben Dwarshius still waiting in the wings, it will be interesting to see who keeps their spot.
CHENNAI SUPER KINGS
Coach: Stephen Fleming
Captain: MS Dhoni
Yet another close match and yet another victory for CSK after being set a seemingly mammoth total by KKR thanks to Andre Russell. Chennai were able to secure victory with one ball to spare and luckily for CSK, Dwayne Bravo and Ravi Jadeja held their nerve. Needing 17 from the last over, both cleared the rope to ensure victory for Chennai.
Unlike KRR, it was an even distribution of runs across the scorecard for CSK. Shane Watson (42 from 19), Ambati Ryudu (39 off 26) and MS Dhoni (25 from 28) all got off to good starts and the hero in the end was Sam Billings as the Englishman scored a blistering 56 from just 23 balls with an impressive strike rate of 243.
In terms of team news, Suresh Raina will miss the next two matches after picking up a calf strain against Kolkata. It remains to be seen who will replace Raina as it is not yet known when injured duo Faf du Plessis (side strain) and Murali Vijay (ribs) will be ready to resume playing.
This is a very important match up for both teams as Kings XI Punjab will be determined to bounce back after a lacklustre display against RCB whilst Chennai have now won two tight games in a row and have the taste for victory. Aside from Mohit Sharma, the Kings XI bowlers were impressive and will require their entire bowling unit to be at their best if they are to knock off CSK. Although they have won their previous two matches, the bowling unit of CSK have leaked 370 runs from these games and will also need to be wary of the talented yet inconsistent Kings XI batting order. Although the injury of Suresh Raina will be a blow, with CSK having won their two first matches in close encounters gives them enormous confidence to triumph again in what should be yet another tight match.