With a win each under their belts, Kolkata Knight Riders and Kings XI Punjab lock horns in the IPL at the Eden Gardens on Wednesday.
Windies all-rounder Andre Russell was the star for Kolkata with the ball and bat against Sunrisers and will be keen on an encore against Punjab, who have their own Caribbean dasher in veteran Chris Gayle.
All eyes will also be on Punjab skipper Ravi Ashwin after his ‘Mankading’ of Rajasthan Royals batsman Jos Buttler in the previous game.
Who will prevail in this encounter on Wednesday? Catch the live updates below.
The veteran Mumbai Indians pacer had earlier been mandated to participate in the upcoming Super Provincial One-Day Cup by SLC. The tournament, which is tentatively slated to run from April 4 to 11, would have seen Malinga miss as many as six IPL matches for the Mumbai franchise.
After discussions with the BCCI, the Sri Lankan board were reportedly going to Malinga available for Mumbai’s next two IPL fixtures but have now decided to release him for the remainder tournament.
“SLC decided to give permission to Lasith Malinga to play in the ongoing IPL. The management decided to release Malinga from participating in the Super Provincial; since he would get an opportunity to play with much stronger opposition in IPL; which consist of international players,” a statement from the board read.
SLC decided to give permission to Lasith Malinga to play in the ongoing IPL.The management decided to release Malinga from participating in the Super Provincial; since he would get an opportunity to play with much stronger opposition in IPL;which consist of international players— Sri Lanka Cricket (@OfficialSLC) March 26, 2019
Malinga, however, still remains keen to captain Galle in the One-Day Cup and is hoping to convince Mumbai Indians to release him for the domestic Sri Lankan tournament.
“I’m very thankful to the board for having released me for the full IPL. But as the captain of the Sri Lanka ODI team, I also think it is important to play the provincial tournament, because I will also be able to see our players in action first hand,” the 35-year-old told ESPNcricinfo.
“I will go to Mumbai and I’ll talk to the management there about getting released to play the provincial tournament.”
Malinga should now be available to play Mumbai’s upcoming fixture against Royal Challegers Bangalore on March 28. His return will come as a boost to Rohit Sharma’s men given that pacer Jasprit Bumrah is likely to miss the clash after bruising his shoulder in the loss to Delhi Capitals.
Defending Indian Premier League (IPL) champions Chennai Super Kings look to be in the mood for more with MS Dhoni and his main establishing their early supremacy with a six-wicket win over Delhi Capitals.
The three-time champions were in dominant form at the Feroz Shah Kotla as they ran the rule over a young Delhi side despite the match going down to the final over.
Restricting the hosts to total of 147-6, Chennai chased down the target with two balls to spare to make it two wins out of two in IPL 2019.
WATSON AND RAINA TAKE STING OUT OF THE CHASE
With the wicket being double-paced, a chase of 148 was not going to be a straightforward one for the visitors but the experienced Shane Watson (and Suresh Raina showed the way by striking at just the right time.
Making full use of the new ball, Watson roared back into form after his 10-ball duck against Bangalore with some crisp hits to the boundary in the powerplay.
The veteran opener punished every small error by Delhi’s bowlers as he raced away to 44 in no time. Striking three sixes and four boundaries, Watson reveled in his run-ins with Delhi pacers Kagiso Rabada and Ishant Sharma as he put Chennai in the driver’s seat.
He eventually was stumped off Amit Mishra but Raina made sure that the visitors never took their foot off the gas with some aggressive shot-making.
The all-time IPL top-scorer was particularly severe on his former India team-mate Ishant before he eventually departed for a 16-ball 30.
By ensuring that Chennai scored at a rate of almost 10 runs an over in the first half of their innings, Watson and Raina’s knocks set the platform for a comfortable finish.
Skipper Dhoni did take the game deep in typical fashion but the 37-year-old was never going to finish on the wrong end of such a chase.
DELHI RUN OUT OF STEAM
Earlier, Delhi skipper Shreyas Iyer’s decision to bat first after wining the toss was looking like a good one with openers Prithvi Shaw and Shikhar Dhawan going great guns in the initial overs.
Shaw, in particular, looked to be in the mood with the India youngster smashing Shardul Thakur for three consecutive boundaries in the second over.
Shaw didn’t last too long at the crease and departed after an entertaining cameo with skipper Iyer following suit after a scratchy innings. However, Rishabh Pant came out all guns blazing just like he did against Mumbai Indians with boundaries starting to flow again at the Kotla.
While Dhawan (51 off 47) wasn’t the most convincing in his knock at the other end, his partnership with Pant had lifted Delhi to a strong position of 120-2 with five overs left to play.
However, the flourish Delhi needed at the end of their innings did not arrive with Chennai bouncing back strongly in the death overs.
Dwayne Bravo removed both Pant and Colin Ingram in quick succession in the 16th over. Keemo Paul went for a duck to Ravindra Jadeja in the next over before Bravo returned to bring Dhawan’s agony to an end.
Just 34 runs came off the final five overs for Delhi. This important phase of play saw the momentum shift the Chennai camp and the experienced Chennai did nit let let it slip once they came out to chase.
Delhi Capitals: 147-6
Shikhar Dhawan: 51 (47)
Dwayne Bravo: 3-33
Chennai Super Kings: 150-4
Shane Watson: 44 (26)