Chennai: Chennai Super Kings coach Stephen Fleming is expecting a tough battle at home against Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League here today. "They are an excellent side. They have some good batters.
We have played them last in couple of finals and in the recent Champions League. So, we have a very healthy respect of the KKR squad. They play a brand of cricket that is not not similar to us. We will identify a brand of cricket for the match," Fleming told reporters on eve of the game. Super Kings have five wins from six games while Knight Riders have three wins from six games, having shared a point against Rajasthan Royals after a washout in Kolkata yesterday.
There is suspense over participation of Knight Riders' premier spinner Sunil Narine, who is eligible to bowl in the coming matches despite being reported again for suspected illegal action. Fleming said his team is not concerned about Narine's participation today.
"The whole thing I find confusing. Let us wait and see. They (KKR) will obviously be concerned and no one likes to see a player put under pressure. To be honest, we have not given much thought whether he plays or not. It is not in our hands and our control but we deal with the day when he does play," said the former New Zealand captain.
On fitness of new recruit Irfan Pathan, who is yet to play in the tournament, Fleming said: "Irfan is coming back to full fitness. He has assured us of match fitness. It is hard to give players a match in the middle of the tournament. Next eight days is one of the key times and we have to manage the players with the scenarios popping up," said Fleming.
Ashish Nehra has been the stand out Indian pacer for them, something that has intensified the competition between Mohit Sharma and Ishwar Pandey. "We are just trying to pick each team based on the conditions that we have to play with and look for each chance for winning the game. We got the same team rolling it out and
we are not going to complicate things. And, sometimes in the IPL you if you complicate things, you end up in a big mess.
"Each game is very important to us and we try to play the best team possible. So, we want Mohit Sharma and Pandey to be competing hard for a spot. They have been pretty good for us so far," he added.