Chopra previewed the CSK vs DC encounter on his official Youtube channel, where he talked about the possible team combinations for both sides ahead of the crucial clash.
As far as Chennai Super Kings are concerned, the former opener said that with Ambati Rayudu still not available, CSK have no option but to play both Murali Vijay and Ruturaj Gaikwad, Talking about the possible change, Chopra said Josh Hazlewood could come into the playing XI by replacing Lungi Ngidi, who was absolutely destroyed by Jofra Archer in the death overs against RR.
“Ambati Rayudu is still not being available. That is a problem for Chennai Super Kings. So, they will have to play Ruturaj Gaikwad and open with Murali Vijay. Talking about any other possibility of a change, I will be considering Josh Hazlewood in place of Lungi Ngidi. Ngidi had conceded 30 runs in his last over of IPL 2020. Jofra Archer had smashed him and I feel it is about time that CSK tries Josh Hazlewood because the pitch has little grass.” Aakash Chopra said on his official Youtube channel.
Imran Tahir is yet to feature in IPL 2020 and even though CSK would be tempted to bring their ace-spinner back, Aakash Chopra thinks that the current playing combination does not allow them to do so, as playing Tahir will mean dropping one of Faf du Plessis, Shane Watson or Sam Curran, something that they can’t afford at the moment.
He, however, added that if MS Dhoni has enough confidence in his batting, then CSK can look to drop a batsman and play leg-spinner Karn Sharma.
“I understand that CSK might want to play Tahir but they may not be able to do that. To play him, they will have to drop a batsman. Even then how will they play him, you can’t drop Sam Curran and Watson and Faf are going to play, so if you play Hazlewood then Tahir can’t play.” he said
“They can play Karn Sharma probably so that you go with another bowling option because one thing is that MS Dhoni is playing with only 5 bowlers, that is never a good thing. So if you want to play a 6th bowler, you can slot Karn Sharma somehow in place of Ruturaj or Murali Vijay. That is if Dhoni is having faith in his own batting because then he will have to bat a little up the order and handle a bit of the pressure.” Aakash Chopra added.
Aakash Chopra picks the key battles to watch out for in CSK vs DC clash
As far as Delhi Capitals is concerned, Aakash Chopra if R Ashwin is fit to play then the only possible change that DC should make is, replace Mohit Sharma by either Harshal Patel or Avesh Khan, given the fact that Ishant Sharma is still unavailable for selection.
“The good news for Delhi Capitals is that Ashwin is probably ready to play but the confirmation will come later. The rest they don’t need to change anything. If Ishant Sharma is avialable, they should play him. If not also, they shouldn’t play Mohit Sharma and play Avesh Khan or Harshal Patel instead of him because Mohit Sharma was ordinary in the first game.”
As far as the key battles are concerned, Aakash Chopra pointed out Faf du Plessis’s duel with Kagiso Rabada and the contest between Deepak Chahar and DC top-order will be the ones to watch out for,
“The player battle to watch out for would be the in-form Faf du Plessis for CSK against Delhi Capitals’ best bowler Kagiso Rabada. So, two South Africans fighting against each other will be a mouth-watering affair. The other battle for me would be Deepak Chahar against Shikhar Dhawan and Prithvi Shaw.” he said.
The former KKR opener signed off by picking Delhi Capitals as favored for Friday’s clash against the Chennai Super Kings.
“I am going with Delhi Capitals as the likely winner. So, Chennai Super Kings would be losing two of their three games with Delhi Capitals winning two out of two, that is going to be very interesting if it happens.” he signed off.