Kings XI Punjab v Rajasthan Royals, IPL 2011, Mohali April 20, 2011

Warne v Gilchrist in Mohali


Match facts

Thursday, April 21, Mohali
Start time 2000 (1430 GMT)

Big picture

Adam Gilchrist contributed to 59 of Shane Warne's Test wickets either through catches or stumpings, one more than Ian Healy did. And then there were the endless plans that the two would have worked out together. On Thursday, they will be using their cricket expertise and their knowledge of each other's games to try and beat the other guy's team. More than other captains, perhaps, Gilchrist and Warne have left deeper imprints on teams they have led in the IPL. They have won the thing once each too.

This year, Gilchrist seeks to leave his imprint on a new side, the Kings XI Punjab, while Rajasthan Royals have loyally retained Warne. They have had contrasting starts to their campaign. Rajasthan began with two wins before running into two defeats at the hands of Kolkata Knight Riders. Punjab lost their first game, didn't bowl exceptionally in their second, but then Paul Valthaty changed it all, winning them that game and the next. While Punjab will look to carry on that momentum, Rajasthan will look to arrest the slide.

Team talk

The last time Rajasthan played, they missed the injured Rahul Dravid and Johan Botha. While Dravid should walk into the XI if he is fit, it will be interesting to see if Rajasthan drop Shaun Tait for Botha. On current form, and considering the all-round skills of Botha, they should. Amit Paunikar hasn't got going as an opener, and his place could also come under scrutiny.

In their last game, Punjab brought in an extra seamer in Vikramjeet Singh Malik. It will be interesting to see if they persist with that winning combination in Mohali.

In the spotlight

At the moment, Paul Valthaty seems to be incapable of committing a mistake. In the last two games, he has scored a century and a fifty, and has also taken four wickets with his split-finger slower balls. If he keeps going in this vein, he is likely to stay on the winning side.

Shane Watson was one of the cornerstones of the success that Rajasthan Royals tasted in their first season. This time, though, he has got off to a slow start, scoring only 33 in two games. Rajasthan will look for some of what he did in Bangladesh immediately before coming to the IPL.

Prime numbers

  • Valthaty needs 36 runs to take back the orange cap from Sachin Tendulkar.
  • Rajasthan's leadin run-getter, Johan Botha with 118, is only the 15th best in the overall list. That represents some of Rajasthan's problems.

The chatter

"He is known to spring surprises on the opposition. So we have to be ready for the challenges thrown at us."
Adam Gilchrist need not be warned about Shane Warne

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • SRINIVASARAO on April 21, 2011, 13:59 GMT

    Gill's Team will win today... 1. They are in good form that is lack by RR 2. They have good bowling attack than RR 3. RR completely depend on Taylor & Watson

    See what happens by EOD

  • Dummy4 on April 21, 2011, 13:17 GMT

    Both Gilly and Shane are good buddies and also colourful Cricketers. The game misses these starwarts.

  • rajendra on April 21, 2011, 12:22 GMT

    S.Warne (captain), S.Watson(wise captain), S.Asnodkar, A.Singh, S.Binny, R.Dravid (wicket keeper), S.Trivedi, R.Taylor, J.Botha, A.Raut, A.Menaria,wow my team nice team

  • Dummy4 on April 21, 2011, 12:11 GMT

    Hoping PXI will win today.

  • Dummy4 on April 21, 2011, 11:31 GMT

    i m a big fan of RR only for trying out new kids on block for india. ultimate chance under Warnie. playing XI against Kings Punjab shud be 1.Watson 2.Asnodkar 3.Dravid 4.Menaria 5.Taylor 6.Rahane 7.Oram 8.Raut 9.Warne 10.Chahar 11.Trivedi

  • Rahul on April 21, 2011, 11:11 GMT

    why is rr not taking chahar n pankaj singh.....dey need a good bowling attack :S

  • robin on April 21, 2011, 10:29 GMT

    RR playing XI should be Asnodkar, rahul dravid, Shane watson, Johan Botha, Ross Taylor,Menaria, Akash Chopra, Penal Shah, shane warne, Deepak chhahar, pankaj singh. this combination would work in all departments for RR.

  • Dummy4 on April 21, 2011, 8:48 GMT

    WOW wat a battle coming our way...d war b/w the best leggie of all times n d best wicket keeper batsman of all start with both teams have changed some players , specially KXIP hav changed the entire look and retained very few players from their previous team.RR have also have come up with some new players specially dravids,taylors, far as form z concerned KXIP looked in gr8 touch finishing with two wins in a row,and RR with two demoralising defeats,but 20-20 is all about how you perform during those few hours,most importantly Gilly z in good nick, and what to say about Paul Valthaty he z in form of his life,spin department z a thing to worry for KXIP as chawla z not delivering upto the expectations,RR bowling looks pretty good,team selection can be a concern for Warne as tait bowled well in the last match against KKR ,also botha has been the highest rungetter for the team.Let's c what combination warne will go with...all the best to both d teams

  • Dummy4 on April 21, 2011, 6:08 GMT

    Ask preety to play chtin urgently he is blaster batsman and pls give a chance

  • Dummy4 on April 21, 2011, 6:03 GMT

    KXIP should include Sidharth Chitnis- the find of Indian Domestic Cricket 2011 and RR should include the new swing bowler Deepak Chahaar in to their squad. I wonder some players are are not even getting chance to proove their talents. Kamran Khan,B Kumar for pune,Sreewats Goswamy,Pradeep Sangwan for KKR,Stuart binny of RR,Varun Aaron for DD,Mukund for CSK are examples...!IPL is destroying their career like Gourav Dhiman- a hard hitting batsman for RCB in 2008 season and keeping him in the bench for the entire season...!Where is he now?

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