The tournament of IPL as expected comes with a bang with beautiful artists performing in the opening ceremonies at each venue. The tournament promises to be as entertaining as never before being the 10th edition this time. The journey of IPL in these 10 years flowed like those sixes and it is hard to believe we have all come together so far. Popularly known as ‘India Ka Tyohaar’ or the Festival of India, the IPL binds and unites not only all the cricket fans, but also the rival cricketers who compete hard against each other on international levels.
Teams to watch out this season
Well it is too early to decide which teams will rise above all odds as the tournament is very big and we have lots of games to be played. However, some predictions can be made with respect to each team’s performances till now in their one or two games.
Not to forget the Orange Army who are the defending champions and are continuing their red hot form from the last year. The first match against RCB looked like a cakewalk for the Sunrisers Hyderabad as they cruised to a massive 207 with a blistering knock from veteran Yuvi and then bowled out RCB for 172. The next match too looked one-sided as Gujarat was restricted to a mere 135 and Hyderabad won comprehensively by 9 wickets with 27 balls remaining.
Every department, be it batting, bowling or fielding looks good for this team and the fact that their combinations are working really well for them gives them an upper hand. Opening duo- Warner and Dhawan gives them a good start with both of them in great nick. Followed are Henriques, Yuvraj and Hooda who balance the middle order very well.
In bowling department, the honours are on swing king Bhuvi with experienced Nehra Ji. The surprise package has been young Rashid Khan from Afghanistan.
Kolkata Knight Riders
How can KKR team be left behind when counting those top ones. The speciality of this team is that they have added some great performers of big stage and tried to retain them over some time, which is phenomenal. The season opener for KKR was the match to remember as they chased a mammoth 184 in just 15 overs and won it single handedly by 10 wickets, thanks to Gambhir and Chris Lynn who fired it up at Rajkot. However, their second match against Mumbai Indians at Wankhede was a disappointment for KKR fans as the tables were turned dramatically.
Batting line up looks great for this team with some good power hitters. On the other hand, the bowling hasn’t quite been up to their standard. Trent Boult and spin twin- Chawla and Narine have huge expectations from their captain and are yet to deliver it on big stage.
Mumbai Indians hasn’t been able to find the right combinations uptil now. Captain Rohit Sharma should take the responsibility to open and play some free shots to open up after his long injury gap. Buttler needs to go down for slog over hitting. A few changes here and there makes a big difference sometime. If the left-hand right-hand combination of Patel-Rohit opens up for the team, they will surely provide a good start and give Buttler a positive mindset to play his natural game down the order.
Bowling is doing well till now except the death over bowling which was reflected in previous game against KKR where Manish Pandey had a go at their bowlers, especially Mitchell McClenaghan.
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Missing AB De Villiers, Virat Kohli, KL Rahul and Sarfaraz surely hurting them at the moment but remember, their return will hurt the opponents for sure! It’s a big league and it’s just the starting of the tournament so one cannot leave RCB behind, especially when they are playing bold in the absence of such big players. But, if Gayle doesn’t fire, half team is gone! Kedar Jhadav is silently doing the job for RCB. The team has also found a great spot for Starc in T mills. Watson’s experience will surely count, especially his variation in death over bowling which is keeping well for them at the moment.
Rising Pune Supergiants
The team filled with captains and great players like Dhoni, Smith, Faf Du Plesis, Ben Stokes and Rahane looks great this season and will surely be the underdogs this time.
Batting line up for Pune’s team looks perfect as they find a good opener in Rahane. Mayank Agarwal needs to do stick around for some time with his partner. One down specialist captain Steve Smith is in supreme form where he can’t do anything wrong. Players to follow are filled with power hitters like Stokes and the finisher MS Dhoni himself.
Bowling has been doing well till now but big games are yet to come and bowlers will be expected to deliver on those stages. Imran Tahir and Stokes have been impressive with some tidy overs. Dinda’s experience will have a big impact in pressure situations. So, don’t miss out on Pune!