The Chennai Super Kings, after picking up an opening victory by the skin of their teeth, will look to make it two in two in IPL 2015 when they host the Sunrisers Hyderabad at the MA Chidambaram Stadium on Saturday.
CSK were a touch lucky to come away smiling in their first IPL 2015 match, against the Delhi Daredevils, with DD unable to chase down a small total, and eventually falling short by a single run as Albie Morkel struck a four off the final ball from Dwayne Bravo, instead of the necessary six.
MS Dhoni was bailed out by some poor batting from the Daredevils and some outstanding bowling from CSK, especially from the wily old Ashish Nehra, who showed those ODI powers are still very much there when he is fit.
If Nehra continues in the same vein, Dhoni will have an experienced bowler capable of leading by example and getting the best out of the rest of his resources as well.
The Chennai Super Kings will look to improve on the batting front for the match against SRH, after not one player managed to get anywhere near the half-century mark. There were three 30s in the total of 150, but the likes of Brendon McCullum and Suresh Raina failed to make their mark, and expect those two, in particular, to look to make amends.
The Sunrisers are quite dependant on their foreign contingent, led by David Warner and Dale Steyn. The SRH camp also have the privilege of choosing from Eoin Morgan, Trent Boult, Ravi Bopara, Moises Henriques and the so-good Kane Williamson, even if Kevin Pietersen will not be available to them for the bulk of IPL 2015.
Warner and Steyn will be couple of the first names on the playing XI sheet, and it remains to be seen who the other two overseas players will be, with the two New Zealanders Boult and Williamson looking like the likely duo, at least for the first couple of games.
"We are very confident of the depth of our batting," Sunrisers coach Tom Moody said on the eve of SRH's first game of the tournament against CSK in Chennai.
"Yes, we don't have Kevin Pietersen here but we have Eoin Morgan, Kane Williamson, Ravi Bopara and Moises Henriques here. Those players along with the talented KL Rahul and Naman Ojha boast a pretty strong top-six."
In Warner and Shikhar Dhawan SRH do have an opening partnership capable of putting any bowling unit to the sword, and with Rahul and Williamson lending the team solidity, it does look a better rounder batting lineup than last season.
The bowling looks pretty strong as well, with Steyn joined by Boult, if he is picked, India regulars Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Ishant Sharma, and former international Praveen Kumar in the pace department, with Karn Sharma and Parveez Rasool providing the spin options.
Ishant has the penchant for getting hit in this format of the game, but he was in pretty good form before injury ruined his World Cup chances, and if he can carry on from that form, SRH should find a much better limited overs bowler in their midst – just keep those good length balls out of the armoury should probably be the advice for Ishant.
Bhuvneshwar is also short on match fitness having played just one game in the entire World Cup, but Moody is not too concerned.
"Bhuvneshwar was our best bowler last season by the length of a stride," added Moody. "I hope he repeats his performance. He is a highly skilled bowler.
"We have played two practice matches in which [Bhuvneshwar and Ishant] have played and none of them have shown any sign of lack of match practice or any fitness issues. They are both ready and rearing to go."
Where to Watch Live
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The IPL 2015 Match 4 is scheduled for a 4 pm IST (11.30 am BST, 6.30 am ET) start with live coverage in India provided by Sony Max, Sony Six, Sony Six and Sony Aath. Viewers stuck at work or outside shopping can also catch CSK vs SRH live in India on Hotstar and Starsports.com.
Audience in the UK and Europe can watch the match live on Sky Sports 3, while the action can also be live streamed on Sky Go and Watch Sky Sports. Viewers wanting to watch the game in the US will be able to do so on ESPN, while the live stream option is on ESPN Cricket.
Viewers across the world can catch all the Chennai Super Kings vs Sunrisers Hyderabad action live on Cricketgateway.