46th Match (N), Chennai, April 28, 2024, Indian Premier League
(18.5/20 ov, T:213) 134

CSK won by 78 runs

Player Of The Match
98 (54)
Cricinfo's MVP
133.75 ptsImpact List

Bruised CSK look to regroup against Sunrisers' heavy hitters

The defending champions are coming off two successive defeats and are in danger of slipping down the table

Abhimanyu Bose

Match details

Chennai Super Kings (Fifth - P8, W4, L4) vs Sunrisers Hyderabad (Third - P8, W5, L3) Chennai, 7.30pm (2pm GMT)

Big picture

Chennai Super Kings started a run of three home games on the trot with a defeat against Lucknow Super Giants, and having lost the reverse fixture in Lucknow just prior to that, they are suddenly looking at the prospect of slipping down the table. Next up for them: Sunrisers Hyderabad, who were flying high till faltering in a 207-run chase against Royal Challengers Bengaluru in their previous game.
If CSK want to regain their form at home, historically there is no team better than SRH for them to come up against. They have beaten SRH 14 times in 20 encounters, and have a 100% win record against them at Chepauk.
But history books have been thrown in the bin this season, especially as far as SRH are concerned. Batting records have tumbled this season, and SRH have been at the forefront of it. So facing them after seeing their total of 210 being chased down in the last game could be a daunting proposition for CSK.
RCB showed one way to counter SRH's deadly opening duo. They bowled spin first up and managed to stifle Travis Head and Abhishek Sharma, getting them both out in the powerplay. So will CSK look at introducing Moeen Ali into the attack early? Or will they hope that Deepak Chahar can dismiss Abhishek for the third time in as many innings?
However they plan it, CSK will know that they need to come out on top in the powerplay with the ball.

Form guide

Chennai Super Kings LLWWL (last five matches, most recent first)
Sunrisers Hyderabad LWWWW

Previous meeting

The two teams met in Hyderabad on April 5, when it still wasn't clear that this IPL would become a six-hitting frenzy. Dube hit 45 off 24, but SRH restricted CSK to 165 for 5. Abhishek set up the chase with a 12-ball 37 before Aiden Markram anchored SRH to victory with a 36-ball 50.

Team news and Impact Player strategy

Chennai Super Kings
CSK are unlikely to move away from the team that lined up in their last match, with Shardul Thakur and Ajinkya Rahane as the respective Impact Players depending on whether they are batting or bowling first.
Probable XII: 1 Ruturaj Gaikwad (capt), 2 Ajinkya Rahane, 3 Daryl Mitchell, 4 Ravindra Jadeja, 5 Shivam Dube, 6 Moeen Ali, 7 MS Dhoni (wk), 8 Deepak Chahar, 9 Tushar Deshpande, 10 Mustafizur Rahman, 11 Matheesha Pathirana, 12 Shardul Thakur
Sunrisers Hyderabad
Despite a hiccup, SRH don't have a reason to tinker with their team. Jaydev Unadkat came into the side in the last game and after finishing with a three-for, will likely retain his place.
1 Travis Head, 2 Abhishek Sharma, 3 Aiden Markram, 4 Heinrich Klaasen (wk), 5 Abdul Samad, 6 Nitish Kumar Reddy, 7 Shahbaz Ahmed, 8 Pat Cummins (capt), 9 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 10 Jaydev Unadkat, 11 Mayank Markande, 11 T Natarajan

In the spotlight

After setting the stage alight with a new, sixy avatar last season, Ajinkya Rahane hasn't quite found the same rhythm in IPL 2024. His strike rate has been 127.78, and he is averaging 23. For reference, he struck at 172.49 last season. He made a 30-ball 35 the last time these two teams met and CSK will hope he can do better on Sunday. Despite middling returns, CSK have persisted with him, even pushing him up to open in the last three matches, but it's still failed to unlock his best.
With Head, Abhishek and Heinrich Klaasen hogging the limelight, Aiden Markram has been a relatively quiet figure for SRH this season. He showed his worth scoring an important fifty in a low-scoring chase when these two sides last met, which could well be his big role in the side. The heavy hitting has been left to the others, he just needs to ensure they don't slide with the loss of early wickets or on tougher tracks. But with Glenn Phillips warming the bench, SRH might want Markram to start returning better numbers.

Pitch and conditions

Chepauk has seen 200 crossed three times in four matches this season - two of those instances in the previous game there. Other than that, it's not been the most free-flowing deck and could be a challenge for SRH's approach. However, if the pitch is anything like the last game, the batters will be licking their lips.

Stats that matter

  • Bhuvneshwar Kumar has dismissed Ajinkya Rahane six times in 17 innings in all T20s. Rahane strikes at 88.88 against him.
  • Jaydev Unadkat is two strikes away from becoming the 25th bowler to get 100 IPL wickets.
  • MS Dhoni is three away from becoming the first player to take 150 catches in the IPL.
  • Abhimanyu Bose is a sub-editor with ESPNcricinfo

    Win Probability
    CSK 100%
    100%50%100%CSK InningsSRH Innings

    Over 19 • SRH 134/10

    Shahbaz Ahmed c Mitchell b Mustafizur Rahman 7 (5b 1x4 0x6 15m) SR: 140
    Jaydev Unadkat c Ali b Mustafizur Rahman 1 (2b 0x4 0x6 2m) SR: 50
    CSK won by 78 runs
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