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HomeChennai Super KingsIPL 2018 Final Preview: Sunrisers Hyderabad v Chennai Super Kings

IPL 2018 Final Preview: Sunrisers Hyderabad v Chennai Super Kings

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Last Updated on 6 years by Charbel Coorey

IPL 2018 Final Preview Cricket Blog

Here we are. 59 Matches. Seven weeks of action. It all comes down to this.

Will Sunrisers Hyderabad be fourth time lucky in IPL 2018 against tonight’s opponents? What will hold them in good stead is an excellent win under pressure at Eden Gardens, led by the magnificent Rashid Khan. “Make Rashid Khan an Indian citizen!” I see on Twitter, and his personality and the way he has burst onto the scene in the last couple of years sees the love for him grow among cricket fans.

He will have a key role to play tonight, but it will be interesting to see if SRH go with different combinations. Wriddhiman Saha struggled at the top against KKR – is it worth bringing Alex Hales back to partner Shikhar Dhawan at the top to relieve the pressure on him? Do SRH believe Hales can offer more than Brathwaite? It remains to be seen.

Chennai Super Kings have had a good four day break after beating SRH in Qualifier 1 on Tuesday. Throughout the season, they have found ways to win when they looked gone, and more of the same fighting spirit can lead them to what will be arguably their sweetest IPL triumph, coming back to the competition after two years in the wilderness.

It’s the orange of SRH vs yellow of CSK for the fourth time this season. Can CSK make it four from four against the team that finished first in the IPL 2018 Points Table? The beautiful IPL trophy is up for grabs, and it’s anyone’s game, despite CSK’s record over SRH this season.

Key to a Sunrisers Hyderabad win

In the three games against CSK this season, SRH have had periods of play where they have had the better of their opponents. In the first meeting, they were all over CSK in the first nine overs of the match. In the second, they batted well to reach 179. In the third, they looked all but certain of a berth in the final, but the magic of Faf du Plessis and Shardul Thakur at the end caught them short.
For SRH, it’s about maintaining their good run of play for longer periods tonight. On Tuesday, they ripped through the CSK middle order, and if they can produce something similar tonight, the likelihood of another miracle CSK escape is low, thanks to the lessons SRH would have taken from Qualifier 1.
For this to happen, the bowlers will need to produce another collaborative effort, led by the brilliant Rashid Khan, whose hopes of the purple cap are still alive. Also, can Shikhar Dhawan and Kane Williamson create a great launch pad, and if so, can the middle order capitalise? 
These are key questions that will go a long way to determining SRH’s fate.

Key to a Chennai Super Kings win

In Qualifier 1, CSK dismissed Shikhar Dhawan first ball, and Kane Williamson for just 24. This went a long way to restricting SRH to 139, albeit on a slow pitch, but there is no denying the importance of those two players.
Lungi Ngidi and Deepak Chahar have been excellent at the start for CSK in recent games, and if they can continue their good form, MS Dhoni will be smiling at the sight of SRH’s top order batsmen walking back to the pavilion. Or, if the top order can be restricted efficiently in the first six overs, the pressure will continue to build, so those early overs are certainly key.
Also, can CSK’s batsmen put on a better show? Faf du Plessis was the unlikely hero on Tuesday, and CSK will not want to be relying on certain players to get out of a hole. Their key to success this season has largely been based on collaborative batting efforts, so more of the same is needed here.

Possible teams

Will SRH stick with the same team against KKR? Had it not been for Rashid Khan’s amazing cameo at the end, they would have been under par, so I think more power is needed at the top. The Saha experiment wasn’t successful in my opinion, so there is a chance Alex Hales could return, or throw Brathwaite at the top with a license to swing.
Sunrisers Hyderabad XI: 1. Shikhar Dhawan, 2. Alex Hales/Carlos Brathwaite, 3. Kane Williamson (c), 4. Shakib Al Hasan, 5. Deepak Hooda, 6. Yusuf Pathan, 7. Wriddhiman Saha/Shreevats Goswami (wk), 8. Rashid Khan, 9. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 10. Siddarth Kaul, 11. Sandeep Sharma/Khaleel Ahmed
Expect CSK to go in with the same team that won Qualifier 1.
Chennai Super Kings XI: 1. Faf du Plessis, 2. Shane Watson, 3. Suresh Raina, 4. Ambati Rayudu, 5. MS Dhoni (c & wk), 6. Dwayne Bravo, 7. Ravindra Jadeja, 8. Harbhajan Singh, 9. Deepak Chahar, 10. Shardul Thakur, 11. Lungi Ngidi

Stats and Facts

  • Head-to-Head: Matches 7, SRH 2, CSK 9
  • CSK have won all three games against SRH this season.
  • CSK will be playing in their seventh final tonight, whereas SRH will be playing their second.
  • The team batting first has won seven of the last ten IPL finals.
  • MS Dhoni will line up in this 8th IPL final tonight.

Prediction:

This promises to be an amazing final. So many little battles within the bigger battle, and anything can happen.
I believe SRH will have a great game, but CSK might have more in the tank, considering they have had a longer break, to win their third IPL title tonight.

Charbel Coorey
Charbel Cooreyhttps://cricblog.net
Charbel is the owner & founder of cricblog.net, based in Sydney, Australia. He started the website to fulfill his love for the game of cricket. Charbel has also been featured on other publications including OP India, Times of India, and The Roar, among others. For any story tips or questions, you can contact Charbel at charbelcoorey@cricblog.net.

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