Curran is key for CSK in the powerplay

The second match of Saturdays double header sees the Delhi Capitals take on the Chennai Super Kings at Sharjah. Chennai will be looking to build on their win last time out, whilst Delhi returned to winning ways against the Rajasthan Royals on Wednesday.

Dangerous Delhi on the march

The Capitals returned to their best against the Royals defending a relatively low total with ease at Sharjah, which is known for having sky high scores. Following their defeat against Mumbai which knocked them off top spot, they got off to the worst possible start with Prithvi Shaw being castled by a snorter from Jofra Archer for a golden duck. And after Archer struck again to get Rahane for 2, the Capitals re-built slowly to get themselves up to 161-7 from their 20 overs.

The captain Shreyas Iyer (53) and opener Shikhar Dhawan (57) batted with real maturity to score the bulk of the Delhi runs, but a poor end to their innings meant that they didn’t quite reach the score that they probably would have wanted.

It was the sensational Delhi bowling attack that got them over the line in the second innings, as they have many times already this year. The run chase was set alight from the start with the Nortje vs Buttler spell which saw speeds as high as 97mph being clocked before the South African sent Buttler back to the shed for 22. Tight spells from Kagiso Rabada and Ravi Ashwin, as well as a solid debut for Tushar Deshpande restricted the Royals, and the Capitals eventually won by 13 runs.

Needing a run of form

The commentators after Chennai’s win over the Sunrisers Hyderabad said that they wouldn’t be surprised if they went on a long run of form to get themselves a play-off place, but they will need to maintain the high standard of performance from last time out to do that. It was a change in approach which got them off to a mixed start; with Faf du Plessis going for a golden duck, it was down to rookie newbie Sam Curran to get them off to a flyer. 31 from 21 for the all-rounder, who may have found himself a new role with the bat.

They posted 167 with Shane Watson (42) and Ambati Rayudu (41) stealing the show with the bat. In response, all of the bowlers did their jobs and kept the Sunrisers under control. Two wickets apiece for Dwayne Bravo and Karn Sharma helped to secure a 20 run win for CSK, who will now be keen to start stringing together a long period of good results.

Match Tip

If Sam Curran is going to open the batting again with Faf du Plessis, who has had a good tournament with the bat, I think CSK could get off to a flyer in Sharjah. After a couple of low scores Prithvi Shaw needs to hit the ground running again in this one.

I am backing the Chennai Super Kings to score more runs in the powerplay than the Delhi Capitals at 2.00 with 888sport.

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