Thisara Perera © Getty Images
Thisara Perera’s inclusion may only go on to add more depth to this line-up © Getty Images

Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) have one of the most exciting batting line-ups in the Champions League T20 (CLT20) 2014. Thisara Perera’s addition only adds to the firepower in a side that features feared batsmen like Glenn Maxwell and David Miller. Nishad Pai Vaidya writes about Punjab’s batting as they get ready for CLT20 2014.

Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) were perhaps the most popular side during the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2014. Fraser Castellino, the KXIP Chief Operating Officer (COO), revealed in a chat with CricketCountry that there was an overwhelming wave of support for the team as they moved from strength to strength in the last IPL. It was a good mixture of youth and experience that brought them results, and they back the same formula as their Champions League (CLT20) 2014 campaign kicks off in Mohali against the Hobart Hurricanes.

Though Punjab won’t have the services of Mitchell Johnson for a while, they have Thisara Perera in the roster. Perera’s inclusion may only go on to add more depth to this line-up. The Sri Lankan seamer is well-versed in bowling in conditions that don’t quite support the fast-bowlers. As a result, he may be more effective when compared to Johnson in Indian conditions. Plus, he brings his copious hitting talent to the table, which only provides more depth to the line-up. They can even promote him up the order whenever it is needed. Imagine Glenn Maxwell, David Miller and Perera coming one after the other!

To say that Maxwell, Miller and Perera would form the core of their batting armoury won’t be inaccurate. Yes, they have other players who can force the issue but this trio has the potential to do the job on their own. In Maxwell, they have a serious game-changer and a man who can set the tone for the innings. Miller and Perera would be the finishers in this unit and would be looked at as batsmen who would absorb the pressure.

The most interesting facet though would be Virender Sehwag. The veteran showed glimpses of his attacking self during IPL 2014 and scripted that famous ton in the play-off against Chennai Super Kings (CSK). There is still that fire in him to show that he has what it takes to succeed. His hand-eye co-ordination may not be at its best, but if he gets into the zone, it would spell trouble for the opposition. Manan Vohra and Wriddhiman Saha, the stars of the final, have shown that they can be attacking, and would be tested by some of the international bowlers. It is their responsibility to set up games for the rest.

Through all that, it is quite easy to ignore the presence of George Bailey, someone who operates very quietly. As a captain, he has been terrific and has marshalled his troops well. His utility as a batsman in this format is underestimated. He too can take on any attack and finish games. However, his role seems to be that of someone who holds the batting together. He is a calming influence and brings that into this team full of naturally attacking batsmen.

Thus, Punjab will majorly rely on the strength of their batting in CLT20. Their set unit gives them the right balance to go all the way. It is their first time on this stage, and they would want to mark it with a good performance.

Catch the complete coverage of Champions League T20 (CLT20) 2014 here

(Nishad Pai Vaidya is a Correspondent with CricketCountry and anchor for the site’s YouTube Channel. His Twitter handle is @nishad_44)