Apart from losing the match against DC, CSK were dealt with a massive blow as all-rounder Dwayne Bravo has been ruled out for a few days owing to the groin injury he picked up against Delhi, as a result of which Ravindra Jadeja had to bowl the disastrous 20th over. Their fielding in the match was atrocious as they dropped Shikhar Dhawan as many as four times, and the latter went on to smash a century.
Their batting too needs to improve significantly, especially in the strike rate department. Faf du Plessis and Shane Watson took too many deliveries to settle in, and only Ambati Rayudu and Jadeja’s big-hitting towards the end took them to a challenging score. With the ball, except for Deepak Chahar no one could make much of an impression.
Shifting focus to Rajasthan, they found some positives against RCB even in a losing cause. The decision to promote the out-of-form Robin Uthappa paid dividends as he smashed a quick-fire 41. RR skipper Steve Smith also returned to form with a fluent half-century. The lack of runs from Steve Smith and Sanju Samson remains a worry.
RR’s bowling too hasn’t come together if we take away Jofra Archer’s brilliant spells. Jaydev Unadkat bowled a very poor over against AB de Villiers, conceding 25 to gift the match away.
Head-to-Head Record: In 22 matches between the teams, CSK have won 14 and RR 8.
CSK Predicted XI: Chennai Super Kings: Shane Watson, Ambati Rayudu, Faf du Plessis, MS Dhoni (C)(WK), Sam Curran, Kedar Jadhav, Dwayne Bravo, Ravindra Jadeja, Piyush Chawla, Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar
RR Predicted XI: Jos Buttler (wk), Yashasvi Jaiswal/Robin Uthappa, Sanju Samson, Steve Smith (C), Riyan Parag. Mahipal Lomror, Tom Curran, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat/Varun Aaron
The pitch at Abu Dhabi is a sporting one. Both pacers and spinners are having their say. Average first innings score is around 170.
Expect another sunny day at Abu Dhabi with temperature in the mid-30s.