Getting the right combination on the field has been a problem since the start of the season, compounded by rank poor performance of overseas stars Maxwell, Neesham and Jordan.
In contrast KKR, after a period of turbulence, have steadied the ship and looking formidable. The batting order’s been set right, and with Narine picking up wickets against CSK, the bowling;s got extra bite too.
KingsXIP will surely turn to talismanic Chris Gayle, who’s not played in the tournament yet, to stymie KKR. Gayle’s got a fabulous record in T20 cricket. Whether he still has it in him to win matches off his own bat remains to be seen.
At the moment, he seems KXIP’s best hope to come out of a hole.
Both teams have had their travails this season, the biggest problem being lack of consistency. In patches, these teams have looked very good, but the overall picture for both remains uncomplimentary.
CSK appeared to have turned the corner after the thumping win over Kings XI,but fared dismally in the next match against KKR.. Likewise, after a fine win over Rajasthan Royals which saw struggling Virat Kohli return to form, RCB lost badly to Delhi, by 59 runs.
RCB are ahead in the points table having one match more, but that advantage could easily be overturned if they don’t come up with a compelling performance today. The batting, after Kohli, remains fragile, but more concerning is lack of support for Chahal in the bowling.
CSK too have problems in both departments. The middle order, with Jadhav a complete failure, has looked dysfunctional. Jadeja’s lack of wickets, even on pitches where spinners have got some help, has made the bowling look weak.
A match which pits M S Dhoni versus Virat Kohli is the stuff that gets fans and broadcasters drooling, but frankly on current form, both sides are below par and need to rev things up.