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The Preview by Sidharth Monga
April 17, 2010
Match factsDelhi Daredevils v Deccan Chargers April 18, 2010
The beauty is, these two teams will know only about 10 minutes before the toss if they are playing a virtual quarter-final. This match will become a virtual quarter-final if Chennai Super Kings beat Kings XI Punjab in the first match on Sunday, which will take them to 14 points - same as Deccan Chargers and Delhi Daredevils, and thus become the third team to make the semi-finals, via a high net run-rate. If Punjab pull off an upset, though, the match will become more important for Deccan, who are not too far ahead of Kolkata Knight Riders in terms of net run-rate. Currently on 12 points, Kolkata have a match in hand, and will know exactly what margin to win by to move ahead of Deccan on net run-rate. Deccan, on their part, will want to quell any such complications.
Form guideDelhi WLLLW
Daniel Vettori could come back on a Kotla pitch that will help spinners. Except for Dirk Nannes, any of the three overseas players could go out. Tillakaratne Dilshan scored a duck on his comeback, David Warner has crossed single figures only twice in six innings since his century against Kolkata, and Paul Collingwood's 75 against Bangalore has been followed by scores of 2, 2 and 4, struggling all the while against spin.
Deccan, on a four-match winning streak, will not want to tinker with their combination.
Delhi 4 Deccan 2
In their first match this season, Delhi failed to chase 172 despite an explosive start by Warner.
In the spotlight
Spinners Pragyan Ojha and Amit Mishra both have reasons to feel hard done by the national selectors, they have both been standout bowlers this season, and could well be the deciding factors on a turning track.
The openers There is enough gun powder in the two top orders to not need flood lights if they start going. Yet they have all been subdued: Adam Gilchrist doesn't seem to be able to last Powerplay, Warner has been down the same route since his century, and Virender Sehwag's last three scores have been 0, 20 and 4.
Prime numbers and trivia
"The top order should have been more responsible. It is all about finishing the job. I hope they bat with more responsibility in the next game."
Gautam Gambhir turns the heat on his famed top order
"The team are doing really well and the boys are motivated. We had to take small steps to come out of the five-match losing streak."
Adam Gilchrist talks about his team's journey from a five-match losing streak to now being on the brink of a five-match winning sequence
Plays of the Day from the Champions League T20 match between Chennai Super Kings and Perth Scorchers, in Bangalore
Plays of the day from the CLT20 match between Dolphins and Lahore Lions in Bangalore
Plays of the day from Lahore Lions' last league match against Perth Scorchers
West Indies' ODI squad for India is surprisingly light on spin, but the tour is an opportunity for Samuels and Russell to make strong comebacks
Though derided and sometimes ridiculed, county cricket still holds the key for the future of the game in England and if all involved believed in it just a little more, it could produce an even greater harvest
Amol Muzumdar, who has announced his retirement from first-class cricket, reflects on his career, missing out on Test cricket, and more