Defending champions Chennai face Virat Kohli-led Bangalore on Saturday in what’s billed to be the perfect curtain raiser for the 12th edition. @ PTI

Former India batsman Krishnamachari Srikkanth feels the Chepauk – venue for the tournament opener of the Indian T20 league – will assist the slower bowlers and the team batting first will have the advantage.

Defending champions Chennai face Virat Kohli-led Bangalore on Saturday in what’s billed to be the perfect curtain raiser for the 12th edition.

“Recent record suggests that the home team starts with a definite advantage, but there is nothing much to choose in this format. One good performance can turn the form book upside down,” Srikkanth wrote in his column for the Times of India on Saturday. (ALSO READ: AB de Villiers lists five reasons why Bangalore are primed to deliver in this season’s Indian T20 league)

“With three good spinners in their ranks, I expect the Chepauk track to assist the slow bowlers. And this is where the defending champions are also most dangerous. They have the batsmen to tackle good spinners and know how to stifle opposing batsmen with nagging accuracy,” he explained.

“The team batting first will have a definite advantage. Ultimately, it should boil down to what the allrounders have to offer. Reading conditions will also be vital and even home team skippers might take a game or two to understand what the strip is likely to offer.” (ALSO READ: IPL 2019, CSK vs RCB Preview: MS Dhoni and Co. aim for winning start)

The tournament gives context to the ICC World Cup 2019, but the former chairman of the selection committee feels not much should be read into the players’ performances in the tournament.

“With the World Cup looming, it will be interesting to see how the Indian players shape up. I know there has been much debate on whether IPL performances should be given weightage for WC selection. As a former chairman of the selection committee, I personally feel not too much should be read into what players do at the IPL. It should, at best, be seen to judge current form if two players are fighting for the same spot,” he said.