Preview: Chennai look to squash Kochi's wafer-thin chance

The Super Kings will not only aim to maintain their unbeaten record at home, but also to find momentum before play-offs begin AFP

By Suneer Chowdhary

Chennai: May 17, 2011

With the points table poised currently as it is, it is only a matter of time before the final four get revealed. If Chennai Super Kings win their game against the Kochi Tuskers Kerala at the M Chidamabaram Stadium in Chennai on Wednesday, the visitors will be bundled out of the tournament and Chennai will be through to the playoffs.

The Super Kings have yet to lose a game at home this season. It started off with the bowlers doing a sterling job before the likes of Murali Vijay and the captain MS Dhoni finding form themselves.

Dwayne Bravo has also joined the side and taken the place of Suraj Randiv to perform the role of an all-rounder. The bowling may have tapered in but with time, Bravo could prove to be a match-winner in his own right. Against an inconsistent Kochi could be the best time to do so.

The Tuskers were rendered captainless when their main skipper had to leave for international duties. Parthiv Patel takes over as the leader but it will be too much of an ask to guide his side so late in the tournament. The good news though, is that Parthiv was a part of the Super Kings till last season and will know a thing or two about things go in their side.

He should also replace Jayawardene at the top of the innings, unless, of course, the side decides to go in with Michael Klinger again. In that case, the side will again not be able to play Muthiah Muralitharan, who also played for the Super Kings till the last season.

Incidentally, Dhoni has said in the past that he reads Muralitharan well enough and that could be another reason why Klinger, as the fourth foreign player, could be preferred over Muralitharan.

Owais Shah will continue to be a part of the middle-order, while S Sreesanth and RP Singh will look to earn some brownie points from their national skipper, Dhoni, by getting some good figures to their name.


Teams:

CSK (Probabale): Murali Vijay, Michael Hussey, Suresh Raina, MS Dhoni (c&wk), Subramaniam Badrinath, Albie Morkel, Dwayne Bravo, Wriddhiman Saha, Doug Bollinger, Ravichandran Ashwin, Shadab Jakati.

KTK (Probable): Michael Klinger, Brendon McCullum, Parthiv Patel (c&wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Brad Hodge, Owais Shah, Raiphi Gomez, Shanthakumaran Sreesanth, Rudra Pratap Singh, Ramesh Powar, R Vinay Kumar.


Time: 20.00 local (14.30 GMT)

(Suneer is a Mumbai-based cricket writer and can be contacted at suneerchowdhary@gmail.com and Tweets here: @suneerchowdhary)