Super Kings v Kings XI, qualifier 2, IPL, Mumbai May 29, 2014

CSK seek their sixth final, Kings XI their first


Match facts

Friday, May 30, 2014
Start time 2000 (1430 GMT)

Play 02:55
Agarkar: Maxwell's slump affecting Kings XI

Big Picture

Chennai Super Kings and Kings XI Punjab have contrasting IPL histories. While Super Kings have made it past the group stage in all seven seasons - and five finals - Kings XI are yet to make a final. Their best showing was reaching the semis in 2008. The difference is stark though Kings XI, with their revamped squad, look formidable.

Kings XI was the one team Super Kings failed to outclass in both attempts in the league stages. They have one more chance to rectify that - in the second playoff. Super Kings' weak link - the bowling - was highlighted in both games as Kings XI posted 200-plus scores. The teams had contrasting fortunes on Wednesday, with Super Kings riding on momentum after brushing aside Mumbai Indians comfortably.

Super Kings could have been chasing in excess of 190, had it not been for the control shown by their bowlers, stifling the batsmen with variations in pace, and careless batting by Mumbai towards the end of their innings. MS Dhoni blamed poor catching as one of the reasons for their sudden three-match blip ahead of the playoffs. They had managed to set that right in their last two games and approach their second knockout game feeling more positive. Batting was never going to be Super Kings' worry. If their bowling can hold it together, Super Kings are likely to be in their sixth final in seven seasons.

Having exhausted a lifeline, Kings XI have their second shot at the final. A listless performance with the bat against Kolkata Knight Riders might have indicated they were running out of steam, but if they weren't compelled to keep an eye on Duckworth-Lewis, the script could have been different. The batsmen were flustered by the threat of a washout and the need to keep up with the par score and yet preserve wickets, but with every passing over, Knight Riders' superior bowling pinned them down. Consistency has been the hallmark of Kings XI's campaign and they have not lost two games in a row. Having come this far, they cannot afford another bad day for it will thwart their first final appearance.

Form guide

Chennai Super Kings WWLLL
Kings XI Punjab LWWLW

League meetings

In the first meeting, in Abu Dhabi, sixties by Dwayne Smith and Brendon McCullum powered Super Kings to 205 but the target was cut down to size in spectacular fashion by Kings XI's Glenn Maxwell. Maxwell's switch hits and reverse sweeps stunned Super Kings as he smashed 95 off 43 balls, David Miller made a clinical 54 as Kings XI coasted with an over to spare. It wasn't the last Super Kings saw of Maxwell.

In Cuttack, a "home" game for Kings XI, Maxwell carried on from where he finished, pounding 90 off 38 balls to lift Kings XI to the season highest 231. Super Kings never threatened the target but still managed 187.

Watch out for...

Sixty-four runs off 24 balls at a strike-rate of 266.67 - that's Maxwell v Ashwin in IPL 2014. R Ashwin is yet to dismiss him and as those figures suggest, it has been one-way traffic. Ashwin has compulsively bowled round the wicket to the right-handers and bowling on the pads to create an awkward angle but Maxwell so far has made a mockery of it. But after Super Kings' win over Mumbai on Wednesday, Ashwin had a message for Maxwell on camera. Though the interview had finished, Ashwin alerted the interviewer for a postscript. He said he would bowl over the wicket to Maxwell, as if throwing open a challenge.

Parvinder Awana has had a stop-start IPL campaign and in his five games, has taken a wicket in each except the first qualifier. However, Kings XI's Sandeep Sharma is still among the top five wicket-takers for the season but has been benched in the last few games. With the game in Mumbai, swing could be a factor. Mumbai Indians' Praveen Kumar troubled Dwayne Smith at the Wankhede earlier this month with his swing. That could encourage Sandeep's inclusion, for he is a bowler in the Praveen mould.

Stats and trivia

  • Kings XI and Super Kings have the most successful bowling attacks in this IPL (in terms of wickets taken). Super Kings have taken 85 wickets while Kings XI's have taken 93 wickets. All other teams have taken less than 80 wickets
  • Brendon McCullum and Dwayne Smith have scored 513 runs while batting together in 12 innings in this IPL (average 42.75) - more than any other pair. David Miller and Glenn Maxwell have only batted together in half the number of innings (6), but have scored 385 runs (average 64.16) - the third highest for any pair.


"We have handled pressure well in the last seven years of the IPL. When you have a skipper like MS Dhoni at the helm and Stephen Fleming as your coach, we learn to handle pressure well."
Super Kings batsman Suresh Raina hopes his team can continue to do so in the remaining games

"We did not bat the way we're capable of and not many of our batsman got a score of 40, I think that led to our downfall."
Kings XI coach Sanjay Bangar on what went wrong against Knight Riders

Kanishkaa Balachandran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy on May 30, 2014, 14:14 GMT

    Kings Xl punjab should win this.Johnson and Maxwell will be key players.

  • Dummy4 on May 30, 2014, 12:15 GMT

    Ahswins is the man with a plan which is bowling over the wicket to maxwell. In the previous two games this did not work beacuse his strike rate was above 200 so why do that. When bowling into someones arc you are looking to get hit out of the park. Good Luck Ahswin and of course KINGS XI have got this game on a lock.

  • Android on May 30, 2014, 11:24 GMT

    today its a clash of titans. but I think csk is better team with the thaliava leader ms.dhoni csk will win today and we wll see a cracking final between kkr vs csk.

  • jaspreet on May 30, 2014, 11:10 GMT

    KINGS XI will beat csk.............hope for the final between kkr v/s kxip

  • Dummy4 on May 30, 2014, 10:57 GMT

    For people blaming Punjab for poor performance in Qualifier one they had external factors which they had no control over poor umpiring has been a feature of this IPL Robbie and Pathan both were plum in front umpires felt otherwise had that been story was different when they come to chase they to score keeping in mind duckworth and play shorts else nine an over over twenty overs could have been planned better all is not lost for punjab if they play to what they are known for csk will be given a run for money.If there is any team which can give csk tough time its kings xi many have said get maxwell out you will game but miller can kill you so can bailey may the best team go punjab

  • jho on May 30, 2014, 10:53 GMT

    3D's Vs 3M's (Dwayne,Duplessis,Dhoni) Vs (Maxi,Miller,Manan)

  • jho on May 30, 2014, 10:16 GMT

    Super Kings have edge over Normal Kings and purely both are batting paradises. 1. (Shewag+Vora+Maxi+Miller+Saha+Bailey) < (Dwaye+Dupple+McCul+Raina+Dhoni+Huss)... CSK 1 Point 2. Jaddu+Ash > Akshar+RDhawan .. CSK 1 Point 3. Nehra,Pandey,Mohit <= Johnson, Sandeep,Karanveer.. KXI 1 Point

  • Dummy4 on May 30, 2014, 10:04 GMT

    the format should be the team in first postion in the point table should automatically go to final.2nd,3rd and 4th spot teams to fight out for the 2nd finalist.Because just loosing 2 matches after winning most get elimiated looks injustice and the teams lost more matches becoming winners looks bad

  • srinivasan on May 30, 2014, 9:47 GMT

    I don`t know who stopped KXIP or other IPL teams to buy capped players. What a rubbish talk is going on here. please have some respect to this wonderful team.

  • Asish on May 30, 2014, 9:40 GMT

    Punjab needs to use their strength i.e. batting to blunt CSK..No doubt CSK has been the team to beat in Knock outs but if anyone can do it, its KINGS XI..

    A lot depends upon the start given by Sehwag-Vohra..if they can get going its hard to stop MAX,Miller n Bailey who has to come up and bat for atleast 20-30 balls..

    My team with batting order- Viru,Vohra,Saha(if early wicket)/Maxwell,Miller,Bailey,Akshar,Dhawan,Jonshon,Karnveeer,Sandeep/Balaji

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