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IPL 2012 opener- CSK vs MI

The IPL 2012 is about to begin. The first match to be played is between IPL defending champions Chennai Super Kings and CLT20 champions Mumbai Indians. Though Mumbai are in full strength in terms of availability, they will have to drop either one of the top order batsmen or someone from their thick bowling line-up to squeeze in all 4 overseas players. CSK, on the other hand, are missing the services of many star players such as Micheal Hussey, Nuwan Kulasekara, Suraj Randiv and Abhinav Mukund. All of their absences, Hussey’s in particular, will hurt the Chennai team badly (strangely, last time these two teams met, it was almost the opposite. CSK had a full-flare side, while MI were missing a lot of their key players). I feel that this is a good time for players like Faf du Plessis and Scott Styris to come out and prove their worth. Though the Chennai Super Kings have the home field advantage, the Mumbai bowling attack is now heavily beefed up, with players such as RP Singh, Praghyan Ojha, and Mitchelle Johnson joining hands with the likes of Harbhajan Singh, Munaf Patel, Kieron Pollard, and Lasith Malinga. So now here are a few clashes that will be interesting to watch:

M.S Dhoni vs Lasith Malinga– The Indian and CSK skipper has always been razor sharp behind the stumps, and devastating in front of them, while Malinga’s yorkers can dumbfound even the most experienced of batsmen. Though neither player has been outstandingly awesome off late, it will be interesting to see what happens when these two lock horns, particularly in the death overs, as MSD is as good a death overs batsman as Malinga is a bowler

Suresh Raina vs Harbhajan Singh- These two are like completely contradictory characters. One bats awesome and is a part time spinner, while the other bowls awesome and  bats pretty OK. Even their cricket attax card ratings reflect such stats. Raina is an awesome T2o player, and no team can let their guard down until he is back in the pavilion, while Bhaji, the newly appointed MI skipper, can a good doosra, which can have even the best batsmen stumped. Both these players will look to give the other a hard time on the field.

Ravichandran Ashwin vs Sachin Tendulkar- Last time Ashwin bowled here in IPL, he troubled the Orange Cap batsman Chris Gayle, and got him duck out. Ashwin is CSK’s most successful bowler, and with Ravindra Jadeja and Shadab Jakati as his bowling partners, he will give MI something to worry about. On the other hand the Little Master (who was the oldest person in the Indian World Cup squad) has just gone over the 100th 100 landmark, and will play a lot more aggressive now. And for Sachin, wherever he goes it’s like a home ground for him. So both Sachin and Ashwin will look to undo each other today at Chennai.

Here are the teams I would recommend for each team:

MI

Sachin Tendulkar

Richard Levi

Rohit Sharma

Dinesh Karthik (wk)

Kieron Pollard

Mitchelle Johnson

Harbhajan Singh (capt)

Lasith Malinga

RP Singh

Munaf Patel

Praghyan Ojha

CSK-

Murali Vijay

Aniruddha Srikkanth

Suresh Raina

Faf du Plessis

M.S Dhoni (capt & wk)

Albie Morkel

Scott Styris

Ravindra Jadeja

Ravichandran Ashwin

Shadab Jakati

Doug Bollinger

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Our one and only LASITH MALINGA

Who is the World’s most dangerous right arm fast bowler?

Lasith Malinga on a slippery track

Who is the World’s most dangerous left arm bowler?

Lasith Malinga

How did Mitchelle Johnson become such a successful left arm pacer?

He kept watching Malinga’s bowling in a mirror

What did Malinga ask the Chennai Super Kings before bowling them out?

Slinga Venuma?

What is the best advice to a batsman facing an out of form Malinga?

Put on a suit of armor

Confused about the 2nd one? Put this image in front of a mirror 🙂 If you don't understand the first one, then ask yourself, what will happen if the guy in the picture slips as he releases the ball?

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Who could get who in the IPL PLAYER AUCTIONS 2012

Here is a debate on who could buy who in the auctions starting today. They will be broadcasted on Set Max from 10:45 AM onwards.

  1. The Deccan Chargers have a formidable side, with the likes of Dale Steyn, Ishant Sharma, Kumar Sangakkara, JP Duminy, and Cameron White. However, despite such a side, they still finished 7th on the IPL 2011 points table. After sending Kevin Pietersen to DD, they now have place for 4 overseas players, and a full purse of $2 million to spend. So, they will be looking for an in-form experienced batsman to guide the young batsmen like Shikhar Dhawan, Sunny Sohal, and Bharat Chipli, to name a few. Maybe Ian Bell or former DC batsman Herschelle Gibbs would help.

  2. RCB have rocked the world of domestic T2o since the arrival of Chris Gayle. With him, Tillakaratne Dilshan and Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers manning the top order, they are just short of invincible there. However, inability to take wickets at regular intervals and/or a delicate middle order have cost RCB many a game. Andrew McDonald’s inclusion into the squad will help in both departments, but with the dropping of Johan van der Wath and Nuwan Pradeep, RCB can work on a few specialists for their bowling order and middle order. maybe RP Singh and R Vinay Kumar would be good bowling partners for Zaheer, or Owais Shah, who answered England’s middle order woes, could do the same for RCB, or Brendon McCullum help with the keeping and take the burden off AB de Villiers . They would’nt say no to  Ravindra Jadeja either, but the all rounder is in high demand from various franchises and RCB, with $1.44 million left in the purse of $2 million after retaining Gayle may not be able to afford him.

  3. Team CSK has by far been the most consistent team in the entire of IPL. With right-left combinations all the way down the order, and experience down every corner, and most of all, functioning as a unit. If they buy back Muralitharan, it could add to the emotional bonding in the team, and also, he would make fantastic bowling partner for  Ravichandran Ashwin. Buying back New Zealand pacer Tim Southee would’nt be a bad option either, in case spearhead Doug Bollinger is injured.
  4. The Delhi Daredevils had a miserable season last IPL, finishing 10th on the table. Now that they have Kevin Pietersen, their batting order has been strengthened. They could buy a good bowler to assist Morne Morkel. Maybe someone like Peter Siddle or James Anderson could help there. Also an all rounder like Jadeja could really provide strength in both departments
  5. Rajasthan are now slightly vulnerable because of their top class all rounder Shane Watsons injury. It is most likely that he will return for the IPL. However, with Shane Warnes retirement, RR will be heavily reliant on Johan Botha for spin. So why not replace one Australian legend with another? Why not pick up Brad Hogg, the left arm wrist spinner? Hogg could help with spin and take the pressure off Botha and also share his experience with other youngsters like Siddarth Trivedi, Pankaj Singh and AdityaDole.  
  6. KXIP have been like a powerhouse of Australian experience and Indian youth. However, Dinesh Karthik’s transfer to Mumbai creates a wide hole in their middle order. In IPL 4 they suffered from the injuries of Dimitri Mascharanus, Stuart Broad and David Miller. If Broad and Mascharanus return in IPL 5, they will have a formidable bowling line up. So maybe they could purchase someone like Morne van Wyke could take the top order with Gilchrist and serve as a reserve keeper as well. Kevin O’Brien could also cement the middle order and bowl as well. So these 2  players could make up for Dinesh Karthik’s departure from the team. 
  7. The Mumbai Indians have a very strong bowling line up with the likes of Lasith Malinga, Munaf Patel, Harbhajan Singh and Kieron Pollard. Praghyan Ojha’s inclusion in a bonus there. However, MI have never had a fully proper opening partner for Sachin since Jaysuriya. Jacobs was always injured, and Franklin, Suman, and Sathish just couldn’t do the job. Aiden Blizzard was good, but not brilliant. So Mumbai will be looking for someone to help there. Dinesh Karthik’s inclusion means that their keeping woes are over. Perhaps Upul Tharanga or Ravi Bopara could help.
  8. KKR have power through the line-up with Brad Haddin ana  Jacques Kallis up opening and Gautam Gambhir at No.3 and Manoj Tiwari at No.4 followed by Eoin Morgan, Yusuf Pathan, and maybe Rajat Bhatia. It’s their bowling that provides all these woes. What can they expect with their only specialist spinner being young Iqubal Abdulla? They should try for a more experienced bowler who can share the spin burden with Abdulla, as well as a good spearhead to assist Brett Lee. Perhaps former KKR spinner Ajantha Mendis or Windies’ pacer Fidel Edwards could help.

  9. Pune Warriors have had a miserable IPL debut, finishing 9th on the points table. Without Yuvraj Singh, the team will either need to purchase a new captain, or appoint Saurav Ganguly captain.Mitchell Marsh was impressive with the ball, and Alfonso Thomas would be a good bowling partner for him, as well as Ashish Nehra. Wayne Parnell and Callum Ferguson could also add to he team’s deadliness. Perhaps investing in someone who can hold the top order and middle order in Yuvi’s absence would be a good thing. Perhaps Brad Hodge or Mahela Jaywardene could serve the purpose.
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Transfers during this window

Here are the transfers between the teams during the transfer window:

1. DINESH KARTHIK moves from KINGS XI PUNJAB to MUMBAI INDIANS:

The Tamil Nadu wicketkeeper batsman was the first transfer of the transfer window. Dinesh was a talented batsman for whichever team he played for, be it Delhi, or Punjab. However, Punjab were unable to harness his full ability because skipper Adam Gilchrist was always keeping. Mumbai will be able to, though as their current keeper Davy Jacobs is not always there for Mumbai to depend on.

Dinesh Karthik

2. RAJAGOPAL SATHISH from MUMBAI INDIANS to KINGS XI PUNJAB

Sathish was the 2nd transfer of the transfer window. Another Tamilian, this all-rounder can bowl pretty well and bat down the order as well. He has done well for Mumbai in the previous tournament. Having him in the low order with the likes of Ryan Harris and Praveen Kumar means that the KXIP batting line up can simply blow apart any bowling any time.

3. KEVIN PIETERSEN moves from DECCAN CHARGERS to DELHI DAREDEVILS

Kevin Pietersen

Kevin Pietersen was the third transfer of the trading window. The hard hitting Englishman was first bought by RCB at a whoop-de-do $1.55 million. He led RCB in 5 games in IPL 2 and played a few games in IPL 3, and did well. He was purchased by DC at $650,000 in the Player Auctions 2011 . However, due to an injury in the ICC World Cup 2011, he was unable to play a single game for the Chargers, who finished 7th in the league. The Delhi Daredevils will find Pietersen’s inclusion useful and maybe they will leave out Ozzie batsman Aaron Finch for him. With the likes of Sehwag and David Warner and James Hopes in their batting line up, including KP will make them all-powerful.He also is the only DD player who dosen’t play for Australia, South Africa or India 🙂

4. HARMEET SINGH moves from DECCAN CHARGERS to KINGS XI PUNJAB

Harmeet Singh

Harmeet Singh was the 4th transfer of the auction window, 2nd from DC. A good fast bowler, making Harmeet bowl the death overs is a gamble. He will be hit for boundaries or sixes in the first 3 balls, but he will get a wicket in the 4th ball. He helped DC win the IPL 2009 final vs RCB by taking out Rahul Dravid and Mark Boucher. His inclusion into KXIP will mean that Gilchrist will have a variation of bowlers that include Harmeet, Bharghav Bhatt, Love Ablish, Shalabh Srivastava and Vikramjeeet Malik to choose from. Harmeet will also be happy to be re-united with his former DC team mates skipper Adam Gilchrist and fast bowler Ryan Harris.

5. ANDREW McDONALD moves from DELHI DAREDEVILS to ROYAL CHALLENGERS BANGALORE

Andrew McDonald

Andrew McDonald was the 5th transfer of the trading window. The Australian all rounder can blast out of the park and single-handedly win matches for any team. He is currently skipper of the Melbourne Renegades in the Big Bash T20, batting at a whoop-de-do average of 52.00 with a strike-rate of 136.84. His medium pace is something reliable as well. McDonald’s inclusion in the RCB team will greatly strengthen their delicate middle-order and will add to their bowling strength. Either RCB will leave out opener Tillakaratne Dilshan or keeper AB de Villiers for him (not that they should, both are in fine form), or keep him as a sub in case someone is injured. McDonald is also RCB’s 5th former DD player 🙂

6. PRAGHYAN OJHA moves from DECCAN CHARGERS to MUMBAI INDIANS

Praghyan Ojha

Praghyan Ojha becme the 6th and final transfer of the IPL trading window, 3rd outgoing from DC. This Orissa-born left arm spinner was crucial in DC’s title victory in IPL 2009, and won the Purple Cap in IPL 2010. He is currently a part of India’s test squad and did well in the Windies’ tour of India. He will be a good bowling partner for Harbhajan Singh. With an already powerful Mumbai bowling attack with the likes of Lasith Malinga, Harbhajan,Abu Nechim, Kieron Pollard and James Franklin, Praghu’s inclusion will help Mumbai to accomplish their motto “duniya hilladenge hum”.

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AB de Villiers- A legend in the making…

Need a solid batsman who can do anything from opening to strengthening your middle order? Someone who is an amazing fielder who can also keep wickets? Someone who can also lead a team? AB de Villiers is who you need. His stats are not bad either. In Test cricket he is 6th on the Batting Performances for 2 Years to 21/10/2011. However it is ODIs that are his speciality. In ODI rankings, he shares the 2nd place with RCB teammate Virat Kohli. He is also a part of the ODI World XI squad.

AB has the ability to single-handedly turn the tables on the opposition. He is capable of hitting out and playing slow innings. He also holds the record of most test innings without registering a duck. His fielding is compared to that of Jonty Rhodes, who was a great fielder in his time. AB’s run out of Simon Katich is one of the best. He dived to stop the ball, and with his belly on the ground, made a direct hit over his shoulder that run out Katich. He also became the first South African to score a double ton vs India on the 4th of April 2008. He scored 217*. He is also an amazing T20 player. He hit a ton against the Chennai Super Kings while playing for the Delhi Daredevils during IPL 2009. AB’s most common post is the No.4 post, but he can open, or bat at No.3 or anywhere in the middle order. During the ICC World Cup 2011, he was easily South Africa’s most consistent batsman. He scored 353 runs in 5 games with 2 hundreds and 1 fifty at a mouth-opening average of 88.25. He also became the first South African to score 2 hundreds in a single World Cup and the 5th batsman to score 2 consecutive tons after Mark Waugh, Saeed Anwar, Rahul Dravid and Matthew Hayden. He was bought by the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the DLF IPL Player Auctions 2011. they bought him at $1.1 million. Personally I feel he is worth much more than that. At the moment he is suffering from a fractured finger. All the best AB, and get well soon!:)

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