Punjab v Delhi, IPL 2013, Dharamsala May 15, 2013

Kings XI Punjab in battle to stay afloat


Match facts

May 16, 2013
Start time 2000 (1430 GMT)

Big Picture

Kings XI Punjab are still in this tournament, if only just. Having pulled off a giant-killing on Tuesday, handing Royal Challengers Bangalore their first home defeat of the season, they will be buoyant. Now they have to win again, and then win once more on Saturday against the might of the Mumbai Indians to have any chance of qualifying. Meanwhile, Royal Challengers will need to lose again, and Sunrisers will need to lose two in two.

Before Mumbai though, they have a less daunting task: the struggling Delhi Daredevils. Last year Daredevils finished the league stage as table-toppers. This year they are in danger of finishing rock bottom. Following their capitulation against Chennai Super Kings on Tuesday, their coach Eric Simons had pointed out that the most frustrating part of their campaign has been that they keep repeating the same mistakes, especially by losing early wickets.

He also said he is already looking at team combination for next year, when a complete overhaul of the squads could happen with all players scheduled to go into the auction (though it is more likely there will be a retention clause available to the franchises). The players will have that big auction at the back of their mind, as a decent finish to an otherwise abysmal campaign could be the difference between procuring a contract and going unsold.

Dharamsala had experienced heavy rain over the weekend, making the organisers wonder if the two games scheduled here would be affected. But, fortunately for Kings XI and the fans, the rain has blown over and the forecast for Thursday is clear.

Form guide

Kings XI Punjab: WLLWL (most recent first)
Delhi Daredevils: LLLLW

In the spotlight

Coming into IPL 2013, with the ever-reliable (in the IPL at least) Shaun Marsh injured, Kings XI Punjab would have looked to two players to carry their batting. The first was an IPL-winning captain in Adam Gilchrist. He failed to deliver early on, both with bat and gloves. When he was dropped Gilchrist said he was keen on leaving himself out, but the others in the team management wanted him to play on. After coming back, he has scored 42, 26 and 85*. He still looks far from his best, though, edging several times in that match-winning half-century against Royal Challengers. If he can produce anything near his best at this vital stage of the tournament, Kings XI should be in business.

Their other big hope would have been David Hussey, who was stand-in captain when Gilchrist sat out. Hussey is one of only three batsmen in the world with over 5000 Twenty20 runs to his name, and one of only two with over 200 T20 games. Kings XI, a franchise that is known to be a small spender, paid US$1.4 million for him at the 2011 auction. In this IPL, he has 235 runs at 23.50 in 11 innings, with a strike rate of 112.44. He was dropped for Kings XI's previous two games. Given the importance of the upcoming games and his immense experience, Kings XI might be tempted to play him. He'll be keen to live up to his reputation and price tag if given the chance.

Stats and trivia

  • Kings XI Punjab lead the head-to-head against Delhi Daredevils 6-5
  • Adam Gilchrist's unbeaten 85 against Royal Challengers was his second-highest score for Kings XI. His best score for the team also came against Royal Challengers, a century in Dharamsala in 2011
  • Last year Morne Morkel took 25 in 16 games at 18.12, and was the leading wicket-taker at the end of the group stage. This year he has 6 wickets in eight games so far, averaging 46.16


"I was working real hard going into this game. One delivery that worked for me was the yorker - both with Gayle and other batters."
Delhi Daredevils take note, here's what Kings XI seamer Parvinder Awana will be looking to dish out more of following his success against Royal Challengers

"I've got a very clear understanding as to what an IPL or a T20 team should look like. It's actually quite interesting because it's not just the skills, but also the different personalities that are spread throughout the team. The fighters, the calm guys, the volatile ones. You need to get the balance right. We obviously have to think very hard about the make-up of our team for the next year."
Daredevils coach Eric Simons is looking ahead to the 2014 IPL auction already

Nikita Bastian is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • RAJESH on May 16, 2013, 11:54 GMT

    As a Sunrisers fan i would like to see Delhi win today's match & CSK win against RCB, as an IPL fan i would like to see Kings XI win today's match & RCB win against CSK. Then i will find the strength, strategy and skill of SRH to go into play offs. I wish SRH to win both matches against RR and KKR.

  • Dummy4 on May 16, 2013, 9:31 GMT

    @ Thumping win. you r right friend . The next match is between Bangalore and Hyderabad but in ipl 7.

  • Ali on May 16, 2013, 9:21 GMT

    Delhi has to do a Pune... when do you hear that??? :P

  • Dummy4 on May 16, 2013, 9:05 GMT

    Eric Simmons' mindset is not justified. Though DD has failed this year, the coach cannot simply look ahead at next year! I wonder if this is just vocal confirmation of pre-held beliefs after initial losses. Coming from a coach whose team topped the league stage the year before this is ridiculous. Can someone elaborate on the retention clause of the auction next year if possible?

  • RAJARAMAN on May 16, 2013, 8:42 GMT

    what a pity? If the head coach is already thinking about next year what would motivate the players to do well this year? It was not fair for ES to publicly state this fact. Well, what is the guarantee that ES will be offered a role in any franchise leave alone DD. Every player in DD will now be thinking about himself only and NOT care about the team winning.

  • saurav on May 16, 2013, 8:33 GMT

    Hope Praveen is fit.He swung the ball a lot in Dharamsala last year.He should replace Gony

  • Sudakar on May 16, 2013, 8:01 GMT

    If kings XI Punjab intends to stay afloat their first job would be to replace Gony with Praveen kumar. Pity! David Hussey may not find a place, courtesy good performance of Azhar Mahmood in the previous match.

  • vas on May 16, 2013, 7:59 GMT

    @ThumpingWin RCB have one match left that is against CSK. KXIP have still chance if they get 16 points and RCB and SRH lose their remaining matches.

  • arun on May 16, 2013, 7:55 GMT

    @ThumpingWin..U dont understand because, match is between RR vs SRH and RCB vs CSK..but not between RCB vs SRH....be sure before u post something...

  • Nitin on May 16, 2013, 7:52 GMT

    @Thumpingwin.... Bro, before talking about logic, please know the schedule. There is no match between bangalore and hyderabad. Both the matches are over, each team won a piece. If Bangalore and Hyderabad lose both their matches and KXIPunjab wins their remaining matches with an improved runrate at 16 points, they might just sneak in through... Though it looks highly improbable, it is definitely not impossible. Remember how Chennai got through last year...

  • No featured comments at the moment.