MS Dhoni and his Chennai team is the only team out of the tournament but they are out there to become party poppers for others and the CSK vs KXIP fixture could be just another. They almost ended Kolkata’s journey in their previous match and they’ll enter Abu Dhabi hoping to do the same to Punjab.
For the first time in the 13-year history of the tournament, Chennai have been reduced to playing for pride as the league stage comes to a close. Punjab, on the other hand, started the tournament the worst and nobody gave them a chance at one point. KL Rahul’s side had just one victory in the first seven this year, but the inspiring run since yielded five wins on the bounce. Friday night’s defeat to Rajasthan dented their hopes slightly but they continue to stay alive in the competition. Can CSK vs KXIP be the end of Punjab in this Indian T20 League?
Ruturaj Gaikwad vs Chris Gayle
The battle of two batsmen in pretty good form. Both of these players will be responsible for their team to score the big total you need in day games to win the match.
Ruturaj Gaikwad had a horrendous start to the tournament as the moment he reached UAE he was diagnosed with COVID-19. He fought like a champion and came back stronger and started the matches without any pre-season preparations. He was used inefficiently by the team in the initial few matches but ever since he has been given the license to open the innings for his team, he has shown his class and a prospect for the future.
He has scored back-to-back fifties and would love to make it three in three.
The ‘Universe Boss’ unexpectedly started the tournament for Punjab on the bench. When he was played, the Punjab management played him at number three and that sent shockwaves to the world. It didn’t make a lot of sense for the best T20 batsmen in the world to play out of position. Nevertheless, he has changed the fortunes of the team and ever since he has joined the squad the team has started winning. His 99 in the previous match was a delight to watch and in doing so he became the first man to hit 1000 sixes in T20 cricket.
PLAYERS TO WATCH OUT FOR
Sam Curran has been the most impressive allrounder for Chennai this season. He has scored 186 runs off 141 balls faced at SR of 131.91 and picked up 13 wickets as well. With 13 wickets scalped this season, he is the leading wicket-taker for the team and that shows his value to the squad.
Ravi Bishnoi has been a revelation this season picking up 12 wickets for Punjab and is the second-highest wicket-taker for the team. His record at Abu Dhabi hasn’t been the best in the season and he’ll look to change it in their last league match.
CSK: Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shane Watson, Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni (WK) (C), N Jagdessan, Ravindra Jadeja, Sam Curran, Deepak Chahar, Karn Sharma, Shardul Thakur, Lungi Ngidi
KXIP: Mandeep Singh, KL Rahul (WK) (C), Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, Glenn Maxwell, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan, Murugan Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh
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