IPL 13: Kings XI Punjab vs Delhi Capitals Preview
In the second match of the Indian Premier League (IPL), Kings XI Punjab will be up against Delhi Capitals.
It will be a tale of two young captains, KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer. They are now a regular member of the Indian team will be in charge of two sides from the northern part of India, Punjab and Delhi.
Historically, Kings XI Punjab has come up as the better side against Delhi Capitals. However, this season the Delhi side is looking better team than the previous years and will pose a good challenge to Punjab.
Kings XI looks formidable at the top with the likes of KL Rahul, Chris Gayle, Nicolas Pooran, and Mayank Agarwal. Batting in the middle-order will be the responsibility of Glenn Maxwell, Mandeep Singh, and Karun Nair. It will be interesting to see if the team management chooses Nicolas Pooran over Chris Gayle to strengthen the middle order which looks a bit weak in comparison with Delhi.
The Delhi line up with Shreyas Iyer and Rishab Pant at number 3&4 respectively make a strong middle order. The selection at the top will be a headache, a good one, where they will have to choose between Ajinkya Rahane, Prithvi Shaw, and Shikhar Dhawan at the top.
A strong finish is very important in T20 and the Delhi can accommodate Shimron Hetmyer, Alex Carey, and Marcus Stoinis at the same time in the lower middle order. In the case of Punjab, selection between Jimmy Neesham and Chris Jordan will be a big decision for the team.
In the bowling department, both the teams have plenty of options to choose from. Considering the traditionally slow Dubai pitch, spinners will be a key. Ravichandran Ashwin and Amit Mishra should be walking into the Delhi playing XI, however selecting a third specialist spinner will be a judgment to make. Punjab has a variety of spinning options but is lacking experience. The Afghanistan spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman looks like an instant pick and Krishnappa Gowtham, too, makes a strong case.
Both the teams have some exciting fast bowlers in the squad. The presence of Mohammad Shami will be a confidence booster for KL Rahul. Shami alongside Ishan Porel and Sheldon Cottrell makes a strong bowling department. Shreyas Iyer will be happy to have the experienced Kagiso Rabada and Ishant Sharma in his playing XI.
Both the teams will be dealing with some selection dilemmas, at least in their first game. It will be interesting to see what team combinations the two sides will choose which will also give us some idea of how they will be going about with their business throughout the season.
Shreyas Iyer's Delhi Capitals has a slightly better chance of opening their season with a win. However, the match is surely going to be an edge of seat thriller.
Total matches - 24
Kings XI Punjab- 14
Delhi Capitals- 10
Dubai weather will hover around 35 degrees Celsius. There is no chance of rain interruption during the match.
The average 1st innings score at Dubai in T20s is 144 suggesting that the pitch can be at the slower side. Batting in the second innings will be a challenge.
Kings XI Punjab - KL Rahul (C, WK), Chris Gayle/ Nicolas Pooran, Mohammad Shami, Mandeep Singh/ Karun Nair, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Mayank Agarwal, Glenn Maxwell, Krishnappa Gowtham, Deepak Hooda, Chris Jordan/ Sheldon Cottrell/ James Neesham, Ishan Porel
Delhi Capitals - Shreyas Iyer (C), Shikhar Dhawan, Rishab Pant (WK), Prithvi Shaw, Marcus Stoinis, Ravichandran Ashwin, Alex Carey, Kagiso Rabada, Amit Mishra, Ishant Sharma, Shimron Hetmyer/ Sandeep Lamichhane