Chennai v Delhi, IPL 2013, Chennai May 13, 2013

Super Kings look to nail playoff spot


Match facts

May 14, 2013
Start time 2000 (1430 GMT)

Big Picture

Two teams will show up at the MA Chidambaram Stadium on Tuesday, though for one of them, nothing is at stake. Delhi Daredevils have already been knocked out and the only thing they can achieve is to make Chennai Super Kings' path to the playoffs harder. Super Kings lost their No.1 spot to Mumbai Indians late on Monday, on the basis of net run rate.* A win from their next two games is enough to ensure a place in the final four. Having come this far, Super Kings won't settle for anything less than pole position for the playoffs.

They face the easier of their two opponents on Tuesday, before heading to Bangalore where Royal Challengers Bangalore have an unbeaten record. Super Kings were defeated comprehensively by Rajasthan Royals in Jaipur, though the game was more evenly matched than the scorecard suggests. Super Kings are known to start off slowly before accelerating in the second half of the innings, but bizarrely, on Sunday, it was the other way round. Regular fall of wickets stalled their progress and they ended with a below-par 141. Their bowlers posed a threat in the early stages of the chase but, for the second time in the evening, Royals took control in the second half, thanks largely to Shane Watson's assault.

If Super Kings win both their games, they are certain of finishing in the top two. If they lose both, they could be level on 20 points with two other teams, thereby leaving the final word with the net run rate. During Super Kings' dream run of seven consecutive wins, there was the likelihood of their final few games turning inconsequential, but two defeats against Mumbai and Royals have given their game against Daredevils more context.

Form guide

Chennai Super Kings LWLWW (most recent first)
Delhi Daredevils LLLWW

In the spotlight

In the post-match presentation in Jaipur, MS Dhoni highlighted one weakness in Super Kings' bowling, which led to their defeat. If the spinners get hammered, are the seamers good enough to fall back on? R Ashwin, their best spinner, haemorrhaged 23 off his only over, giving Royals the break they were looking for in a faltering chase. It compelled Dhoni to rely on his seamers, but the due of Dwayne Bravo and Chris Morris weren't good enough backup, going for 71 off seven overs. It's an area of concern for Daredevils too, as two of their main seamers, Morne Morkel and Umesh Yadav, went for a combined 100 off eight overs. Yadav leaked 65 of those off his four overs, making it the second most expensive figures in the IPL behind Ishant Sharma (66). Morkel, lukewarm through this tournament, went wicketless. Against Super Kings' lower order, they will have to get their act together.

Stats and trivia

  • Two of Super Kings' biggest wins in terms of runs have come against Daredevils. Both were by 86 runs - the first was in Chennai last year and the second at the Kotla last month
  • MS Dhoni has effected the most dismissals by a wicketkeeper in IPL 2013 with 12 (10 catches and two stumpings)


"We are comfortably placed in the points table but we don't want to take anything for granted. So, the next game is going to be much more important for us."
Super Kings opener M Vijay

"With Mahela [Jayawardene] not travelling with us to Chennai, it's another opportunity for one of the international players to step up and I think I will be going back up the order as well, so hopefully I can put some fire in the top of our order again."
Daredevils stand-in captain David Warner

* - 1830 GMT - this was amended after Mumbai Indians' win over Sunrisers Hyderabad

Kanishkaa Balachandran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Rajesh on May 14, 2013, 13:32 GMT

    I can see, most of the comments saying either against CSK or CSK wont qualify for the play-off's. I hope those all MI, RR or RCB fans. Hope they dont want to face CSK in their play-off's match (this means SRH wont come into play-off party...they cant win matchs with big margin...and still they are in negative net RR).

    This shows how CSK will handle the situation in the play-off's. Those teams should remember, CSK proved their capability in the past. I wont say CSK is be deserved for the cup...but CSK will fight till the end...real sportmanship...I will always whistle for matter what...

  • Vidhya on May 14, 2013, 13:10 GMT

    Every year, there is one individual who takes the match away from CSK. In 2011 it was Paul Valthaty, in 2012 it was Bisla. This year it was Watson.

  • Sathyanarayan on May 14, 2013, 9:53 GMT

    Hope we get an opportunity to watch M. Morkel bowling to A. Morkel and vice-versa.

  • Dummy4 on May 14, 2013, 9:51 GMT

    hussey, faf, bravo, albie....would be overseas players for CSK !!!! get Faf in...!!!!! we cant make him wait for long !!!!

  • Dummy4 on May 14, 2013, 9:38 GMT

    I don't know how many of your agree or not, but Mohit Sharma is one of the main reasons behind CSK grand success in this tournament. He is the BEST POWERPLAY BOWLER in this IPL.

  • Thyagarajan on May 14, 2013, 9:33 GMT

    I can't understand how anybody can ask for Vijay to be dropped. He is a big match player. He showed glimpses of what he can do in the last two games (mind you, against RR his strike rate took a hit only in the later part of his innings). My instinct says, Vijay is going to be the man from now to the finals. Albie can come in for Holder to add that extra zing in the batting, just in case.

    Two crucial matches for CSK and to ensure they are one of the top 2, it is better they win both so that they can afford to lose 1 in the play off and still reach the finals.

  • Sathyanarayan on May 14, 2013, 9:04 GMT

    A must win game for CSK. Depends on team selection. If i were Dhoni/Stephen Fletcher, i would drop Vijay and bring in Saha. Drop Holder and bring in Morkel which gives a pinch hitting option in the middle overs. Holder did well last time, because the pitch got spiced up due to rain. Drop Ashwin and bring in Annrirudha. Can get 16 overs from Morkel, Mohit, Bravo and Morris, another 4 from Jadeja. If any of them have an off day, Raina can pitch in. Hussey, Bravo, Morkel and Morris make the 4 foreign players. With Saha or Annirudh, they have a pinch hitter option in the first power play overs. Dhoni should play his cameo after settling down. Team selection should be based on performance and also the pitch and weather conditions - facts and not some esoteric mumbo jumbo.

  • Dummy4 on May 14, 2013, 9:01 GMT

    Time for speculators , I suppose . It only adds to the joy of watching IPL , that the same spectator roots for a team on one day and against the next day . At the end of it all , the teams that qualify for the plat offs will be CSK , RR , MI and RCB .

  • SudhaPrakash on May 14, 2013, 8:55 GMT

    CSK is very heavily dependent on Mike Hussey. If DD can target Hussey and get him early, its their game definitely. Dhoni should stop going for unnecessary shots early in the crease. He can afford to plat some dot balls, because he can do justice later. I can sense a win for DD today.

  • Vijay on May 14, 2013, 8:49 GMT

    Since having a good Indian batting line-up (Vijay, Raina, Badri, Dhoni, Jadeja), CSK should use one good overseas batsman (Hussey), one all rounder (Bravo/Morris/Albi) and two good fast bowler (Nannes & Ben Hilfi). This will be a perfect balanced CSK to face any team. My CSK team for rest of the matches - Hussey, Vijay, Raina, Badri, Dhoni, Jadeja, Ashwin, Bravo/Morris/Albi, Nannes, Ben Hilfi & Mohit.

    Bowling line-up should be; For first 10 Overs; Mohit (3), Nannes (1), Ben Hilfi (1), Bravo/Morris/Albi (2) and Ashwin (3)

    For last 10 Overs; Ashwin (1), Bravo/Morris/Albi (2), Mohit (1), Nannes (3) and Ben Hilfi (3)

    With the above combination CSK can restrict any team below 140.

    Go CSK and get CUP