Indian Premier League Cricket - Chennai Super Kings v Kolkata Knight Riders Preview

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Published: 19/05/2014

Two of the best teams in this season’s IPL meet in this important fixture, as Kolkata Knight Riders take on the Chennai Super Kings. Chennai are second in the table, and still strongly fancied to ultimately triumph in the Indian Premier League. Kolkata look to be in a very strong position to reach the play-offs as well, and this match will give us an idea of where the two teams stand going into the latter stages of this competition.

Chennai have outstanding performers with both bat and ball, but it is the latter that has really caught the eye during the current IPL campaign. While the IPL is often associated with the destructive batting of Chris Gayle, it is a different West Indian who has excelled during the existing campaign.

Dwayne Smith’s 449 runs at a strike rate of over 130 has been central to Chennai’s excellent form. Having made five fifties – more than any other team in the competition – the batsman is very much one of the top batsman in IPL 2014 so far. Additionally, one of the biggest hitters in the game after Gayle, Brendon McCullum, has also been in good form, and Chennai are pretty intimidating for any bowling attack, especially with the best finisher in the business, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, coming in lower down the order.

Mohit Sharma has also impressed with the ball for Chennai, having taken as many wickets as any other bowler in the competition. But he has also been very ably by Ravindrasinh Anirudhsinh Jadeja and Ravi Ashwin, who have picked up a useful 31 wickets between them. This makes them a formidable opponent for any team, with brutal batting and probably the most successful bowling attack in the competition.

A lot of the Kolkata Knight Riders’ batting has been done by one man. Robin Uthappa has made the third most runs in the competition, and offers a very reliable element to the KKR batting. But the star player of the Knight Riders is undoubtedly the inimitable spin bowler Sunil Narine. One of the toughest bowlers to pick in world cricket, Narine’s career has been one of almost relentless success in very form of limited overs cricket, but undoubtedly T20 has particularly suited his style.

Narine is once again near the top of the leading wicket takers in the IPL, and no match is lost until he has twirled his bewitching spell. KKR will need him to perform against Chennai if they are to come out on top.

However, I simply view Chennai as the stronger of these two teams. I fancy the Super Kings to win the entire IPL, such is the balance in their side between bowling and batting. It is already hard to completely write off a team with Sunil Narine in it, but I think the superior batting line-up of the Chennai Super Kings will win the day in this particular fixture.

Tip: Chennai Super Kings to win

Any odds displayed within this article were correct at the time of publishing (19/05/2014) but are subject to change.

19/05/2014     © Frixo 2017

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