Tarot reader Shruti Chopra looks into her cards to give CricketCountry.com readers exclusive insights into what lies ahead in the IPL matches. In the below piece, she dwells into the Royal Challengers vs Kings XI Punjab game - the only IPL match on Friday.
Kings XI Punjab
Kings XI Punjab are working very hard to move away from this tough phase of inconsistency. They have re-evaluated their strengths and weaknesses and believe that they can now achieve balance in their game. The Four of Wands encourages that the Kings XI will be able to build a stronger platform from which they can be more successful in this match. Their fielding may be a concern, as they won't be attacking enough. Seeing this, the opposition would try and dominate, causing the Kings XI to commit more mistakes.
Adam Gilchrist has been blessed with the combination of the Ace of Pentacles and the Queen of Wands, so he should play an attacking innings and provide a good opening for his team. He may begin to look weaker as the batting responsibility would increase on him. His captaincy will initially be authoritative and strong, but there will be phases where he will lose clarity in his decision making. He may hold himself back.
Piyush Chawla will play an independent game. He will have to do a lot of thinking in terms of his approach towards each batsman. He shows all the potential to be attacking and wise – it's this combination that will bring him results.
Dimitri Mascarenhas will start off well, but may not be able to maintain his momentum.
David Hussey should have a good innings through a strong partnership and has the ability to push the scoring rate rapidly.
Shaun Marsh will initially be steady, but with the Devil in his cards, he will be tempted to pull off a few big shots, which he should manage quite well.
Praveen Kumar will come with many ideas, which he may find hard to achieve. As the bowling spell progresses, his confidence will grow and he would receive success from this.
Mandeep Singh will be wise, in control and stable in his game play. He may have to be the anchor for the team's innings.
Harmeet Singh should be miserly in giving away runs, and would be an important player for Kings XI Punjab today.
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Royal Challengers Bangalore are a team that has the Wheel of Fortune with them. They're on a high and believe that their time has changed. They feel like they have a new lease of life and would want to grow from this feeling. They look ready to dominate and accumulate runs. This comes on the back of some good, solid planning. Overall, their fielding, bowling and batting all look quite consistent. Their main weakness again lies in their last few overs and so they will need to keep pushing themselves through to that victory.
The team has such great opportunities in this match, but unfortunately, this doesn't seem to rub off on to their captain, Daniel Vettori. He is looking too carefree in his approach and is not being pro-active enough. The same thing resonates in his bowling. He will need to adopt a more attacking approach if he wishes for his bowling to improve and would then be able to generate more life in to his captaincy.
Virat Kohli is coming across to be too hesitant. The Nine of Wands explains the importance of him losing his fear, so that he can grab on to his opportunities and shine, just like the Sun. He is also being supported by the Two of Wands which re-emphasises the importance of him taking on this challenge to dominate.
Chris Gayle will be dominant from the onset of his innings. He will bat with a purpose and should get some valuable runs for the team. His innings may end against the run of play.
Tillakaratne Dilshan has the Page of Cups warning him of not being too complacent initially. Otherwise, the balance from the Hierophant shows a consistent innings.
Muttiah Muralitharan wants to be a part of a win, and that's the spirit he will play with. He should have a successful day and his enthusiasm will charge up the team.
Harshal Patel will have the confidence to dominate and charge ahead on his well directed plans. He has the potential to be very successful in this game.
Zaheer Khan will start of strong, but then he would want to experiment with his bowling. He will have the potential to pull off these experiments.
AB de Villiers, as a wicket-keeper will need to be careful of not frittering away too many runs. As a batsman he will have great ideas, energy and the ability to implement plans successfully. It should be a strong day for him.
Who has the advantage?
Punjab has a very strong captain, yet the team is trying to achieve the right balance. Whereas, Bangalore have a weak captain, but a team that is getting stronger and is better balanced than Punjab. It would be advantage Royal Challengers Bangalore for me.
(London-born Shruti Chopra was introduced to cricket by her two older brothers. She spent some of her childhood time in Delhi and became an Indian cricket fan. She has remained an unflinching and passionate Indian cricket fan even after moving back to London, setting 3.00 am alarms to watch India play Test matches. It was during the 2011 World Cup that she brought together her passion for cricket with her profession of Tarot Reading, looking at the cards in the hope of spotting an India win coming through - which it did! You can know more about Shruti via Facebook, Twitter and her website)