Big picture

There isn't a great deal of jeopardy in the contest. Both Chennai Super Kings and Delhi Capitals have qualified for the playoffs but there is the small matter of confirming a place in the top two, which offers an extra shot at a place in the IPL final.

A scrappy victory over the defending champions, led by their former captain, may well be just the kind of tonic the Capitals need as they move into the final stretch of the IPL. Mumbai Indians were in full-on fightback mode on Saturday but Shreyas Iyer weathered the blows like a grizzled old pro who knew just when to go for the KO. This team already has a great pair of openers and a phenomenal bowling attack. Now they've found their middle-order marshal.

Super Kings also learned a valuable lesson, albeit in a loss to Rajasthan Royals. After going down in that high-scoring game, they will be better informed about what to do and what not to when batters come at them as hard as Yashasvi Jaiswal and Shivam Dube did.

In the news

Marcus Stoinis has spent three games on the sidelines as a result of injury. It is as yet unclear if he has recovered well enough to take part in tomorrow's match.

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Has R Ashwin underperformed this IPL?
Has R Ashwin underperformed this IPL?

Likely XIs

Chennai Super Kings: 1 Ruturaj Gaikwad, 2 Faf du Plessis, 3 Moeen Ali, 4 Ambati Rayudu, 5 Suresh Raina, 6 MS Dhoni (capt & wk), 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 Dwayne Bravo, 9 Shardul Thakur, 10 Deepak Chahar, 11 Josh Hazlewood/Sam Curran

Delhi Capitals: 1 Prithvi Shaw, 2 Shikhar Dhawan, 3 Steven Smith, 4 Shreyas Iyer, 5 Rishabh Pant (capt & wk) 6 Shimron Hetmyer, 7 Axar Patel, 8 R Ashwin, 9 Kagiso Rabada, 10 Anrich Nortje, 11 Avesh Khan

Strategy punt

  • Prithvi Shaw is a destructive batter, when the ball comes down perfectly straight. Bowlers capable of moving the new ball have troubled him in the past. So he might want to be off strike when Deepak Chahar has the ball. The head-to-head reads 55 runs off 50 balls and five dismissals.
  • South Africa may not want him in their T20 side anymore but Faf du Plessis is among the first names down on the Super Kings team sheet. He sets the tone for their entire innings, so taking him out assumes top priority. Enter R Ashwin (45 runs off 45 balls, three dismissals) and Kagiso Rabada (31 off 28, three dismissals). Capitals will do well to open the bowling with this pair.

Stats that matter

  • Super Kings have been the best six-hitting team in the IPL. They have cleared the ropes 96 times with Ruturaj Gaikwad topping the list of players (20) with the most maximums this season.
  • Shikhar Dhawan appeared invulnerable in the India leg of the tournament, averaging 54 and striking at 134. But after four matches in the UAE, those figures have gone down to 20.5 and 114.
  • The Delhi franchise is one shy of 100 wins in the IPL.

Alagappan Muthu is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo