Virender Sehwag’s Daredevils defeated Kolkata Knight Riders by eight wickets in their rain-affected opener at Eden Gardens on Thursday. Sehwag will hope his bowlers have the same effect on the feisty Royal Challengers’ batting line-up that includes the likes Chris Gayle, Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers. Add to that, Daniel Vettori’s Bangalore have India hopefuls Cheteshwar Pujara and Saurabh Tiwary to boost their middle-order.
“I think if we field well and limit some of the damage Sehwag can do that will be part of our plan. If we do that consistently we may give ourselves a chance,” Vettori told reporters yesterday. “It is always difficult to play against Sehwag because he is a very good player of fast and spin bowling,” he said.
For Delhi, while Morne Morkel was the pick of the bowlers in their opening tie, Umesh Yadav and Roelof van der Merwe pitched in with some crucial dismissals. But Sehwag’s premier all-rounder Irfan Pathan will prove vital for his team’s chances this season. Sehwag’s gamble to promote Irfan to the No 3 spot paid off on Thursday.
But Sehwag will be wary of the Royal Challenger’s bowling attack spearheaded by India regulars Zaheer Khan and Vinay Kumar. And apart from captain Vettori, Gayle and Kohli could prove to be equally handy in the spin department.
The Daredevils, however, will be continue to play without big names Mahela Jayawardene, Kevin Pietersen and David Warner who are on national duty. Besides, New Zealand captain Ross Taylor is also unavailable after he broke his hand during the third Test against South Africa recently.
* Get rid of Chris Gayle in the very first over
* Batting fires in the absence of Jayawardene, Warner and KP
* Irfan Pathan fires with both bat and ball
* Morne Morkel strikes again
* Not allow Zaheer Khan and Vinay Kumar to dictate terms
* Chris Gayle resumes where he left off in IPL-IV
* Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers pile on the runs
* Keep Delhi skipper Virender Sehwag on a leash
* Zaheer stays fit for full season
* His batsmen get the best of Morne Morkel