IPL 2016: Fantasy Championship guide RPS v GL
Updated - Apr 29, 2016 1:41 pm
The Mumbai Indians ensured that they gifted the Wankhede crowd with a proper farewell gift by easily running past Kolkata Knight Riders. Robin Uthappa and Gautam Gambhir started strongly for KKR but the lower middle order just couldn’t find that extra push to reach the 200 mark.
Rohit Sharma has definitely been taking ‘chasing’ lessons from Virat Kohli as he has starred in every Mumbai Indians chase this year. Yesterday was no different, as he superbly paced his innings and never let the asking rate climb up. But the show stealer was Kieron Pollard, he was due for a long time and he repaid the faith that has constantly been shown in him by the Mumbai Indians management.
R Sathish had a night to forget as he was clobbered with disdain by the big West Indian and Mumbai would be really happy that he has found some form going into the second stage of the group games.
KKR often find it difficult to beat teams when playing on a good batting surface. They rely on slow, turning pitches, where their spinners can run havoc and then their opening batsmen can lay the groundwork and easily chase the score down. The lower middle order needs to take more responsibility and ensure that they finish their innings strongly (especially when batting first).
Let’s get to business now!
Rising Pune Supergiants vs Gujarat Lions
Transfer out: Rohit Sharma, Krunal Pandya
Transfer in: Ravindra Jadeja, Murugan Ashwin (uncapped player)
When RPS won their last game comprehensively, things started to look bright for them, the uncertainty revolving around their IPL campaign just seemed to be fading away but all that positivity received a huge jolt when Faf du Plessis was deemed unfit for the remainder of the IPL. MS Dhoni who has already had to tinker a lot with his side will now have to draft in a good enough opening batsman into his side as well.
Gujarat Lions had to play the last game without their highest scorer Aaron Finch but his injury led to the reunion of one of IPL’s most feared opening partnership, that of Brendon McCullum and DR Smith. And both of them hit it off straight away, challenging each other in a ‘boundary hitting’ duel. The Lions would hope that these two fire again as their middle order looked really out of sorts in the previous game.
Now, I already have Ajinkya Rahane, DJ Bravo and Suresh Raina in my team for this game.
I can only make one change for this game and it cannot be one from McCullum or DR Smith as all my 4 overseas players play either in tomorrow’s game (DJ Bravo) or they play day after tomorrow (QDK, Shakib Al Hasan, and Andre Russell). Hence, all I can do is hope for both of them to not go berserk again and get dismissed for a paltry score. And if the last game in Pune was any indication of how the pitch will behave this time round, that is exactly what will happen as both Smith and McCullum struggle against quality spin.
Now, the only player that I consider picking for this game is Ravindra Jadeja. But his selection will be subject to the pitch report and only if the same strip is used as the last one and there is enough evidence that there will be turn, will I opt for him. Jaddu has been a great limited overs bowler but often on flat surfaces his bowling goes flat as well. So, wait for the pitch report and get him in only if there is enough to convince you that the pitch will offer turn.
I omit Dhaval Kulkarni despite his brilliant performance last time round as he doesn’t bowl in the death and getting wickets in the first 6 is not always possible.
Now, if you want to go for one from McCullum and Smith, I think you should go for McCullum as he is a better player of swing and spin than Smith. Dinda got the ball to swing around last time round for Pune and Murugan Ashwin’s tricky leg breaks could prove to be fatal for Smith and hence I advise you to go with McCullum if you want to go for one of them.
For the uncapped player, I bring in Murugan Ashwin as he extracted a lot of turn from the pitch in Pune’s last game here. Pravin Tambe is more of a slider than a leg spinner and thus, he won’t be as lethal as Ashwin on a spin-friendly surface.
Batting captain: Ajinkya Rahane (if Pune bat second)/ Suresh Raina (if Gujarat bat second)
Bowling captain: DJ Bravo(if GL bowl first)/Murugan Ashwin(if RPSG bowl first)
Happy team picking!