Chennai Super Kings vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, Dubai

Pro Tip: The pitches have slowed down, and the scores are becoming lower. So pick a lot of bowling options.

Our XI: AB de Villiers, MS Dhoni, Devdutt Padikkal, Virat Kohli, Ambati Rayudu, Sam Curran, Chris Morris, Ravindra Jadeja, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Imran Tahir

Substitutes: Shane Watson, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Siraj, Navdeep Saini

Player availability: All players are available for selection.

NOTE: We might not always be able to tip you off about late injury (or other relevant) updates, so please finalise your team after the toss.

Captain: Virat Kohli

Kohli's strike rate (127.57) has been on the lower side but he has been consistent. His last seven outings have fetched 347 runs, including two fifties. That he bats at No. 3 gives him a great chance to bat plenty of deliveries. His highest score in the tournament (90*) came against the Super Kings in the previous fixture.

Vice-captain: Chris Morris

Morris has picked up nine wickets in five games so far. His economy this season is a fantastic 5.00 and his strike rate is 13.3. Even when he doesn't pick up too many wickets, he bowls economically and contributes on the field.

Hot Picks

AB de Villiers: He has been in stunning form, having scored two match-winning fifties in his last three innings. Three out of his four half-centuries have come in Dubai. In Dwayne Bravo's absence, the Super Kings could struggle at the death, a passage where de Villiers has a mind-blowing strike rate of 243.47 among all batsmen who have faced 100-plus balls in that phase.

Imran Tahir: Tahir finally got a game after sitting out for ten games. He had an amazing CPL 2020, finishing as the third-highest wicket taker. Tahir was the Purple Cap winner last season and against the Royal Challengers last season, he picked up four wickets for 40 runs in eight overs.

Sam Curran: Curran has been a standout player for the Super Kings this season. He has scored 173 runs at a healthy strike rate of 136.22, playing at various positions. He has scored some quick runs in every position he has played in as well. With the ball, he is the joint-highest wicket taker for the team with ten scalps, at an economy of 8.50.

Differential Picks

Washington Sundar: Sundar, if used in the powerplay, is a serious threat for the opposition. He has picked up three wickets in this period at an economy of 5.23. Given that the Super Kings have tended to start slowly, he could come in immediately. He picked up 2 for 16 in the first game between the two teams this season.

Devdutt Padikkal: He has consistently given the Royal Challengers decent starts and has made three half-centuries. He is quickly catching up with Kohli's aggregate this season - he's currently on 321 runs at a strike rate of 124.41.

Alternate Scenarios

  • The Super Kings will look to test their bench yet again so wait for the toss before you choose your XI.

  • Faf du Plessis could be rested for Watson. If Watson plays, bring him in for Dhoni.

  • Given the Super Kings' series of low scores batting first, if they bat first again, consider making Morris your captain and Chahal your vice-captain.