Chennai Super Kings will have to come up with another fine show to get the better of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) on Sunday. The defending champions are in stunning form at the moment but will have to be at their best to extend their winning run at the Eden Gardens. The Super Kings are all but assured of a place in the playoffs after winning first 6 of their seven games. As a result of their winning run, Chennai Super Kings are sitting pretty at the top of the points table.
However, the win could come to an end at the Eden Gardens, a venue where Super Kings have traditionally struggled. Super Kings have only won at the Eden Gardens only once while batting first. Among all grounds this season, they fare the worst in Kolkata, with a win percentage of only 40 since the inaugural season of the IPL.
Moreover, they had also lost their last encounter at the Eden Gardens.
What makes things tough for the Super Kings is the absence of their star allrounder Dwayne Bravo. The former West Indies allrounder has not played since the defeat against Mumbai Indians and is likely to remain on the sidelines due to the hamstring injury. Speaking ahead of the game against Knight Riders, Super Kings batting coach Mike Hussey said that Bravo is still a few games away from attaining full fitness.
“I am not hundred percent sure but he is well on his way to getting back from the hamstring injury, hoping he is back as soon as he can but I don’t think he is ready quiet as yet,” Hussey told the media.
With Bravo out of the game, the onus will be on Deepak Chahar to deliver the goods. The pacer has done well so far with 10 wickets from seven matches. When asked about Chahar, Hussey said the 26-year-old’s ability to swing the new ball with good control makes him a bankable bowler.
“You watch the slow motions, the seam position coming down, it’s in beautiful position. He’s been very accurate and can swing the new ball; that’s why he’s used in the first few overs. His ability to pick up wickets in powerplays [is] very important as well,” Hussey said.
“In the last few matches, we have actually started using them at the death as well. And I do see that continuing, maybe just one over towards the end. And it’s something that I know he really looks forward to,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Super Kings will be also without Harbhajan Singh for the clash as the spinner is recovering from a neck injury.