Arun Gopalakrishnan in Mumbai
Preview: Match 2 – Kolkata Knight Riders vs Delhi Daredevils
Delhi Daredevils take on IPL champs at Centurion
A match that promises to be a cracker: Defending IPL champions Kolkata Knight Riders take on the Delhi Daredevils in Match 2 of the Karbonn CLT20 2012.
The Kolkata Knight Riders make their first appearance in the CLT20 main event by virtue of winning IPL 2012, while the Delhi Daredevils are competing in the CLT20 for the second time following their appearance in 2009.
Saturday, October 13, 2012, 5:30 p.m. (9:00 p.m. IST)
Centurion Park, Centurion
The Delhi Daredevils have perhaps the most formidable batting line-up in the competition. In David Warner, Mahela Jayawardene, Kevin Pietersen, Virender Sehwag and Ross Taylor, they have five game-changers and individuals capable of winning matches single-handedly. Warner, Jayawardene and Taylor were in good form in the recently concluded ICC World Twenty20, and it will be important for them to carry that form into this tournament. Pietersen hasn’t played too much cricket in recent times and he will need to shrug off his rustiness quickly, as will Sehwag, who is returning from an injury.
In the Kolkata Knight Riders ranks, skipper Gautam Gambhir needs to lead from the front – just like he did in his team’s IPL 2012 campaign. Jacques Kallis and Brendon McCullum will be the two other key players in the KKR’s batting line-up.
On the bowling front, the Delhi Daredevils will expect their battery of pacemen – Morne Morkel, Umesh Yadav and Irfan Pathan to do the bulk of the damage, while the Kolkata Knight Riders will be hoping the mystery bowler Sunil Narine can spin his magic yet again. The 24-year-old Narine was the West Indies’ leading wicket-taker in the recently-concluded ICC World T20 and also KKR’s leading wicket-taker in their title-winning IPL campaign.
The Kolkata Knight Riders have a slight edge over the Delhi Daredevils heading into this contest. In the ten previous meetings between the two teams, KKR have emerged victorious on five occasions, while the Delhi Daredevils have won four matches. One fixture in the 2008 season of the IPL was washed out by rain.
Virender Sehwag’s batting strike-rate of 157.91 is the second-best among all batsmen who’ve scored more than 1000 runs in Twenty20 cricket. Only Kieron Pollard has a better strike-rate; he’s scored his 2983 runs at a strike-rate of 161 runs per 100 balls.
Brendon McCullum is among the top three run-getters in the T20 format; he has scored 4336 runs in 149 T20 matches (only behind David Hussey’s aggregate of 4670 runs and Brad Hodge’s aggregate of 4500 runs).
The Kolkata Knight Riders will be back in action on October 15 when they take on the Auckland Aces at the picturesque Newlands Stadium in Cape Town. The Delhi Daredevils meanwhile will enjoy a five-day break before their next fixture – against the Auckland Aces on October 19.