PBKS vs CSK: Not Shashank Singh or Ashutosh Sharma!! Aakash Chopra names the most important Punjab batsman

Published - 05 May 2024, 02:40 PM | Updated - 07 May 2024, 07:12 AM

Aakash Chopra and PBKS vs CSK
Aakash Chopra and PBKS vs CSK. YouTube/BCCI-IPL

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Punjab Kings (PBKS) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) will go head-to-head in Match No. 53 of the ongoing IPL 2024 at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamshala on Sunday, May 5. Before this encounter, Punjab Kings (PBKS) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) met on May 1 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium, where the tourists won the game by 7 wickets.

Well, PBKS will now look to maintain their winning streak in the ongoing IPL 2024, and CSK’s weakness with the new ball will help the hosts get a grip on the game early at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamshala on Sunday.

Ahead of the PBKS vs CSK clash, former Indian batter and cricket analyst Aakash Chopra has identified Jonny Bairstow as a player to watch out for in Dharamshala. He highlighted CSK's concerns with their new ball, and due to that, PBKS batter Bairstow will be his first player to watch out in the match.

Jonny Bairstow will make the most of CSK's weakness with the new ball: Aakash Chopra

With CSK facing issues due to injuries and the unavailability of key bowlers like Deepak Chahar and Mustafizur Rahman, Chopra believes there's an opportunity for emerging talent like Mukesh Choudhary to make an impact with the ball.

Chopra is not in favor of CSK sending Shardul Thakur with the new ball, given his recent struggles, suggesting that the defending champions must explore other options to make a comeback in the ongoing IPL 2024.

Well, the commentator believes that the conditions at the HPCA Stadium would suit Bairstow’s aggressive style of play, and he can make a mockery of CSK bowlers. With a small field and a good pitch offering decent bounce, Chopra stressed that Bairstow's power-hitting abilities could be instrumental in determining the outcome of the PBKS vs CSK IPL 2024 match.

Notably, Bairstow is the second-leading run scorer for the PBKS this season after Shashank Singh (288). He has amassed 250 runs at a strike rate of 165.56 in 8 games so far in the IPL 2024.

Jonny Bairstow will be my first man to watch out for: Aakash Chopra

Aakash Chopra said on his YouTube channel: “The first player to focus on is Jonny Bairstow. He is batting extremely well. The new ball is an area of concern at the moment if you see it from the Chennai Super Kings' viewpoint. (Stephen) Fleming said Deepak Chahar's injury is not looking good. Tushar Deshpande didn't play in the last match. Mustafizur (Rahman) is not available now.”

Chopra added, “You might see Mukesh Choudhary playing because Shardul Thakur was looking very ordinary when he was bowling with the new ball. (Matheesha) Pathirana doesn't bowl with the new ball. So, Jonny Bairstow will be my first man to watch out for because he has power and this ground will suit him. It's a small ground with a good pitch and decent bounce. The ball will travel far.”

In the end, Chopra said that Ashutosh Sharma and Shashank Singh would also be his players to watch out for against CSK in Dharamshala. Chopra also praised their intelligence, strong arm power, and excellent hitting technique, saying they have the potential to make an impact on the game.

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