To wrap up a below-par season on a positive note, MS Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings (CSK) are set to lock horns with Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) in 53rd fixture of the on-going IPL 2020. Both CSK and KXIP have had a fair share of disappointment this year. While the Punjab side managed to conceal them with five consecutive victories, CSK failed to stay in the playoffs race.
Dhoni's men, contrary to expectations of fans, are sitting at the bottom of the points table with just five wins from 13 games. Ahead of their last IPL 2020 fixture, CSK will be optimistic about finishing their torrid run on a smile. The Chennai side will be coming in this game after thumping Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in their last two games. Gaining momentum, especially their batting unit, the CSK camp has shown positive intent and confidence in their previous two victories.
Led by Ruturaj Gaikwad's brilliant half-centuries, CSK had managed to pull off their run-chase on both occasions. They'll hopeful of delivering a similar performance against the KL Rahul-led side at Abu Dhabi.
KXIP, on the other hand, will do it all two grab two crucial points and stay afloat in the top-four race, especially after suffering a thumping seven-wicket victory in their last game against Rajasthan Royals (RR). KXIP will have to clinch two crucial points in this do-or-die game and leave it to their luck to secure a playoffs berth. Six teams are still contesting for a top-four finish and KXIP will bolster their chances of achieving it with a win over CSK.
The Punjab side might've lost against RR but the biggest positive for them was Chris Gayle's scintillating form with the bat. The Universe Boss will be hoping to click and deliver when his side needs him the most. He was in sublime touch against the Rajasthan bowling unit, hitting 99 off just 63 deliveries including 6 fours and 8 maximums.
Head to Head: CSK had steamrolled KXIP in their last meeting by registering an emphatic 10-wicket victory. The MS Dhoni-led side leads the head-to-head contest by 14-9. Their head-to-head record in the UAE stands even at 1-1.
- All eyes will be on Chris Gayle's batting show at Abu Dhabi. Despite being 41, the Caribbean star has amassed 276 runs in only six matches at a strike-rate of 144.50 and an average of 46.
- KL Rahul has been the synonym for consistency this season. The skipper has led his side from the front, scoring 641 runs in 13 innings at an average of 58.27.
- Along with Rahul, KXIP will also be expecting to see Mayank Agarwal at the top. He has scored 398 runs this year including a ton and 2 half-centuries.
- MS Dhoni has had a below-par season with the bat in the tournament. However, his record against KXIP is impressive. He has gathered 525 runs against the Punjab franchise.
- Ravindra Jadeja has shined with the ball against KXIP. He has nine scalps under his belt in CSK-KXIP encounters.
- Mohammed Shami has rattled many batsmen with his form this season. The speedster has scalped 20 wickets so far including best figures of 3/15.
- Ruturaj Gaikwad has won the Man of the Match award in the last two matches and his batting form will be beneficial for the CSK side. He has struck 142 runs in 5 games, including two half-centuries.