ibnlive » Cricketnext

CL T20: Kings lock horns with Stags

Cricketnext.com
Sep 18, 2010 at 10:12am IST

Port Elizabeth: One team is loaded with star power, the other with commoners. One boasts of specialists who pride in demolishing the opposition, the other has six players who can bat and bowl. One is led by a T20 World Cup winning skipper, the other who has not even played five T20 international games.

It's an unequal battle and Jamie How and his Central Districts Stags would do well on Saturday if they can walk off the field with just their heads held high against the MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings at Kingsmead, Durban.

A look at the team composition is enough to give Chennai the winning points. Now it's just a matter of going out there and carving out a nice Net Run Rate. Even with six all-rounders, the stags just don't have enough fire power to challenge the Chennai batting line up that boasts of the likes of Mathew Hayden, Murali Vijay, Suresh Raina and the skipper himself.

CL T20: Kings lock horns with Stags

If Chennai win the toss, Dhoni is sure to elect to bat first on a Durban wicket known to help the batsmen.

Stags' pacer Michael Mason, Peter Ingram and captain How have limited experience at the top level, while another batsman Matthew Sinclair has sparked only in the longer version of the game. Their most influential player, Ross Taylor, changed his loyalties at the last moment and decided to represent Royal Challengers Bangalore instead of the home team. Clearly, he knows which team to back!

If Chennai win the toss, Dhoni is sure to elect to bat first on a Durban wicket known to help the batsmen in the early stages and the bowlers later as the ball gets old. The ball, however, may get battered before getting old with the burly Hayden determined to prove that his 'mongoose' bat is just the weapon of choice.

Vijay could be equally destructive at the top but with a more sober approach than Hayden, while Raina - who has gathered most of his runs with a big heave over the mid-wicket in the recent past - will be itching to demonstrate his skills again.

Skipper Dhoni, too, won't mind hitting a few lusty blows and S Badrinath will be the perfect foil to take the innings forward just in case the side loses a few quick wickets.

With Doug Bollinger, Albie Morkel, Muthiah Muralitharan, and all-rounder Justin Kemp in the side, Chennai has the potent bowling attack to defend any total their batsmen set during their outings in the middle.

This game is a sure-shot win for the Super Kings. All that the Stags can do is run for cover.

Latest

More from this section

Bleacher Report