IPL 2021 – The first qualifier of the current season will be between the two best teams Delhi Capitals (DC) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. Two teams are on a mission to lead the tournament on their terms the way they want to. On one hand, there is the captain of the future Rishabh Pant while on the other MS Dhoni the captain of the past who proved how the captaincy is to be done in the tournament so far.
Difficult to guess who will enter the finals first where Chennai Super Kings (CSK) have appeared in the finals multiple times, Delhi Capitals (DC) have entered the finals only once so far in the last year of the IPL 2020 season. Even after losing from here, the team will get a chance to play the second qualifier. While there will be a chance for Delhi Capitals to play the finals for the second consecutive year or perhaps the lift the trophy too.
Where the record of Chennai Super Kings has been good in the qualifiers, it will not be easy to beat them. From Faf du Plessis of Chennai Super Kings to Rituraj Gaikwad are already in brilliant form in the tournament, it will not be easy for the bowlers of Delhi Capitals to stop them at such a point. Ahead of the most exciting clash, Let’s take a look at three players’ battles to watch out for.
Faf Du Plessis vs Avesh Khan
Faf du Plessis, the most successful batsman of Chennai Super Kings, is in second place in the race for the Orange Cap behind KL Rahul (626) runs. Right-handed batsman Faf du Plessis scored 546 runs in the tournament in 14 matches including 5 half-centuries at an average of 45. Looking at the current form, his team will expect big innings from Faf du Plessis.
Delhi Capitals’ most successful bowler Avesh Khan has impressed in the tournament with 22 wickets in 14 matches. However, the Purple Cap is still with Harshal Patel, who has 30 wickets to his name. The second phase has gone well for Avesh Khan, it remains to be seen whether he can sustain it in the upcoming matches or not.
Ruturaj Gaikwad vs Ravichandran Ashwin
Rituraj Gaikwad, the second most successful batsman from Chennai Super Kings, has wonderful bat-and-ball coordination in the tournament against quality fast bowlers. In the current season, the right-handed batsman has scored 533 runs in 14 matches including 1 century and 3 half-centuries at an average of 44. Rituraj Gaikwad, the future of India, will have a chance not only to take Chennai Super Kings closer to the trophy but also to get closer to winning the Orange Cap.
On the other hand, the tournament has not brought some good results for Ravichandran Ashwin, be it bowling or batting. Ashwin is an experienced bowler and his experience will be useful for the young team of Delhi Capitals in such an important match against Chennai Super Kings. While, Delhi Capitals would not like to take Ashwin lightly, who is capable of taking wickets at regular intervals from his bowling on any track.
Suresh Raina vs Kagiso Rabada
For Chennai Super Kings batsman Suresh Raina, the tournament has been in stark contrast to the team’s performance. The performance of a magical batsman like this is definitely a sign of some concern but his experience cannot be ignored. Suresh Raina was rested by Chennai Super Kings against Punjab Kings but would not want to take out their most experienced player in the crucial matches of playoffs’. It will be interesting to see the performance of left-handed batsman, Suresh Raina in the games to come.
Like Suresh Raina, the tournament remains rough for the fast bowler, Kagiso Rabada. The bowling lineup of the Delhi Capitals is better than the rest of the teams in the tournament. Chennai Super Kings would not want to take Rabada lightly at all, who’s capable of taking wickets with his fast bowling and striking with speed.