Chennai Super Kings v Kolkata Knight Riders, IPL 2013, Chennai April 27, 2013

Knight Riders face a tall fort wall


Match facts

Sunday, April 28, 2013
Start time 1600 (1030 GMT)

Big Picture

Kolkata Knight Riders were within touching distance of Chennai Super Kings just a week ago when the two met in Kolkata. Now, Super Kings are second on the table and are cruising ahead, while Knight Riders are still struggling to take off. They are seventh on the table at the halfway stage and need a massive turnaround in the remaining matches to finish in the top four. It will have to start in Chepauk, Super Kings' fortress that teams are increasingly finding hard to breach.

With the solid presence of Michael Hussey at the top, Super Kings' powerful batsmen are being laid ideal platforms in every game. MS Dhoni, Dwayne Bravo, Ravindra Jadeja are not being pressurised to resurrect innings and when they start attacking, they are not the easiest to stop. Their bowling, however, can sometimes be slightly vulnerable and the line-up lacks a top-quality pacer up front.

Knight Riders could focus on these supposed frailties, but they have plenty of their own. Yusuf Pathan's spot in the side is both a mystery and an embarrassment and makes one wonder about the depth of patience the management have, because as an investment, he is not making any sense. Then, apart from their big three, no one really has shown any consistency for the team to rely upon. In Chennai, the focus will again be on their bowlers and their ability to counter the local batting threat. Since the game is in Chennai, the offspinner Sachithra Senanayake will have to sit out this game due to the ban on Sri Lankan players.

Form guide

Chennai Super Kings: WWWWL
Kolkata Knight Riders: WLLLW

Players to watch

In Super Kings' last match against Sunrisers Hyderabad, MS Dhoni raised the game against a tough opposition. He single-handedly neutralised the Dale Steyn threat and bailed his team out. He is one of the few batsmen who can change gears without warning and especially thrives against slower bowlers, mysterious or not.

Jacques Kallis, one of Knight Riders' marquee players, bowled and batted with energy against Kings XI Punjab, showing no signs of the injury that had put his participation in doubt. He picked up two valuable wickets and scored a well-planned 37 just when the team needed it. Knight Riders will have one thing less to worry if he can lend similar all-round prowess in future matches,

Stats and trivia

  • Suresh Raina is one short of becoming the second batsman to hit 100 sixes in the IPL.
  • Dwayne Bravo and Sunil Narine have both taken 14 wickets this season. But whereas Narine bowls at an economy rate of 5.65, Bravo is expensive at 8.47


"If we keep on winning, we will be in the top half. We have the belief."
Knight Riders wicketkeeper Manvinder Bisla

Devashish Fuloria is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on April 28, 2013, 10:19 GMT

    When the First Ipl Began all Other team had superStars except for Csk and RR.No one expected them to reach Finals.I think RR won Due to team performance(My 2nd fav team thanks to warne and Dravid).CSK plays as a team thats y it has been Performing well,which Includes Management as well.If KKR r to start becoming a team like CSK they got to select a team which performs and have a Bench which is strong enough.First up drop Yusuf down and Try tiwary or baz at top.Bring in Lee. For CSK they got to give srikanth a go or even Baba.Jakati once a match winner seems to be comfortable in the benches.we have Enuf batting We need a Bowler Replace Jason and Bravo with Faf ad Nannes or Hilfy.But this Year team selection has not been spot on!! all the best for CSK and KKR.Looking forward for a nice battle :D

  • Dummy4 on April 28, 2013, 10:00 GMT

    Any and every batsman will find himself struggling in a seamer friendly condition, and that too when you have quality pacer like Steyn, but the point is do the bowler have guts to rattle up batsman even when pitch is not supporting?

    There is no doubt about Steyn, he can anytime do it anywhere, but Dhoni simply outclassed him that day. Same happened last time when AB Devilliers thrashed Steyn in an IPL game. So, in essence if situation isn't favouring too much still you come up good then you are the MAN!!!! for your team.

  • Mohamed on April 28, 2013, 9:47 GMT

    Dhoni Will Teach Lesson to Gambhire..ha haa haa..Whistle poduuu..

  • narbavi on April 28, 2013, 9:10 GMT

    @innocentFOX: Ugly pitches? hmm tell where you are from and lets see how your pitches look like, do not give excuses, ofcourse in seamer friendly wickets Dhoni is going to struggle against Steyn, nobody denies that!!

  • joel on April 28, 2013, 9:07 GMT

    My prediction ...Dhoni will try to take on Narine in the middle overs, and will score a few boundaries before holing out to midoff.

  • Paramesh on April 28, 2013, 9:03 GMT

    Will be a great game of cricket reminding last year's IPL final. CSK have won 4 games in the last over losing 1. Becoming a habit giving heart attack to their supporters. Hope they start winning with overs to spare. Vijay has been a huge disappointment failing in 7 of 8 games. Could keep him out for couple of games & this helps to fire like last year. Badrinath can partner Hussey while A.Srikkanth or B.Aparajith comes in the middle order. Also time to strengthen bowling, which is very vulnerable especially in the death overs. Nannes for Holder will be a good bet. Raina like Vijay has been disappointing, which puts pressure on Hussey & rest. KKR have a lot of work to do. Individually many players are brilliant & have shown but somehow are not able to get their act together as a team, which was their biggest strength in last year's triumph. Y. Pathan's continued failures is hurting & hope he fires soon as KKR are not enjoying same luxury on the points table unlike last season.

  • Dummy4 on April 28, 2013, 9:01 GMT

    Guys, You cant keep vijay out, since there is no replacement in indian domestic cricket. You cant compare anirutha with vijay, vijay is way better than anirutha in timing, class and technique. The only think is he needs to get out of his match pressure, if he plays freely then no one can bowl to him. Remember that six hit by vijay on the first over that bowled by Lee that too a bowncer in the final of last IPL. Lee is overrated player and i bet that if he plays today sure his economy will go beyond 10/over.

  • Nitin on April 28, 2013, 8:52 GMT

    Enough of this good team on paper and bad team on paper ........ Last session no one was expecting KKR to win but they did ......... This IPL is sure gona be even-steven match I even expect that Delhi and Pune will rise from dust and the so called Chennai and Bangalore mighty team will be gone and dusted ......... I am not saying which team is gona win but it will sure will not be a one sided tournament........... good luck Kolkata show that to win u dont need heros u need players ......

  • Dummy4 on April 28, 2013, 8:38 GMT

    haddin mus play todays game coz mccullum is on the way for england kkr mus play haddin and keep him as back batsmen tho im a chennai fan

  • Dummy4 on April 28, 2013, 8:36 GMT

    GG, Bisla, Kallis, TIwary, Morgan, Das, Sukla, Tendo, Bhatia, Balaji, Narine

  • No featured comments at the moment.