Their winning streak snapped, Delhi Daredevils will have to sort out shortcomings like poor fielding and listless bowling when they take on injury-hit Chennai Super Kings in their fourth Indian Premier League match here on Friday.
Delhi won both their away matches – against Kings XI Punjab and Rajasthan Royals – but faltered at home, losing by a whopping 98 runs to Mumbai Indians.
Adding to their woes is the hamstring injury to captain Gautam Gambhir, making him a doubtful starter for Friday’s match. Gambhir had been on field for barely 10 minutes before the hamstring injury forced him out.
Chennai, on the other hand, have played just two matches, winning the opener against Kolkata Knight Riders before losing at home to defending champions Deccan Chargers.
Chennai will be without talismanic skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who injured his elbow during the match against Kolkata Knight Riders.
Delhi’s campaign had been going perfectly with convincing triumphs over Punjab and Rajasthan until they were blown away by Sachin Tendulkar’s Mumbai.
Feroze Shah Kotla, hosting its first major game since being banned for a year following the pitch fiasco during an India-Sri Lanka match last year, turned out to be a batting paradise as Tendulkar and other Mumbai Indians batsmen made merry.
a lot to be desired as Mumbai piled on a mammoth 218 runs in their 20 overs.
Chasing the huge target, Delhi never looked in the hunt and they desperately missed Gambhir in the line-up despite having hard-hitters like former captain Virender Sehwag and Sri Lankan import Tillakaratne Dilshan.
Chennai suffered a similar fate against Deccan Chargers in their last match. Their bowlers failed to impress as Deccan posted 190 on the board and chasing the difficult target, the batting also failed to come good.
In the absence of Dhoni, Suresh Raina has been appointed the stand-in skipper of the team and it remains to be seen how the youngster responds to the responsibility that has landed on his shoulders.
Chennai’s batting looks brittle as they are already missing the services of Australian Mike Hussey and New Zealand’s imposing all-rounder Jacob Oram. While Hussey is on national duty, Oram has been forced out due to injury.
By the look of things, both Delhi and Chennai seem to be on the same boat and it would be interesting to see which of the two sides manages to overcome the setbacks better.