IPL 2020: Battle of the big boys
Today's CSK v RCB tie is a clash of two India captains who are keen to excel.
Royal Challengers Bangalore and Chennai Super Kings need to find their mojo. The match involves two India captains, who want to deliver for their franchisee. RCB, despite big names, have never won the IPL since its inception.
CSK, a money ball team that pick horses for courses, are feeling the effects of the clock ticking on their players. The shortest format can be fickle in nature, a turnaround of form and a result can help players and teams take a different path. Both CSK and RCB will hope that the tide turns their way. Sitting at the middle of the points table can be a step away from a move upwards or a slide to the bottom and that is why this game has relevance from a dressing room spirit perspective.
A win here will inject a sense of self belief that will keep them alive and breathing well during the business end of the tournament.
Shane Watson, Faf du Plessis, Ambati Rayudu have looked like setting the tone for the yellows up the order. The finishing hasn't been like the CSK we are used to. Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja will have a huge role to play as batsmen in the second half of the innings. If that comes off, be sure Dhoni's men will be back on track as they have done over the years. There is depth and skill to deliver, needless to say options aplenty.
RCB on the other hand, have shown a dependence on the talented Devdutt Padikkal, AB de Villiers, skipper Virat Kohli and Aaron Finch. The flip side to that is when the guys who you depend upon fail, the ones who haven't been exposed to a match situation are severely tested.
Washington Sundar, Navdeep Saini and Isuru Udana have been reliable for the RCB attack. To win games, they need to chase well and restrict well, a quality that has been inconsistent for RCB this year.
It could all change with one game for both these teams and this encounter carries the weight of being transformational for one of these two teams. Motivational talks, video dissection, plans aside, this game is all about who plays well to their team's strength.
Shishir Hattangadi is a former Mumbai Ranji Trophy captain, now CEO of Baroda Cricket Association
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