The newbies of the IPL, Gujarat Lions are primed for their debut match in the lucrative league against Kings XI Punjab at their den, Mohali. The Suresh Raina-led side would look to put their best foot forward to leave a lasting first impression. The Gujarat Lions boast some powerful hitters in their lineup who can change the course of matches on their day.
In Brendon McCullum, Dwayne Smith, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja and Dwayne Bravo, the Lions have got the crux of the CSK side which will come handy for them. The likes of Dinesh Karthik and James Faulkner will further strengthen their batting prowess. Dale Steyn, Pravin Tambe, Praveen Kumar and Dhawal Kulkarni make the bowling attack look decent but still they lack the required firepower on the bowling front.
It’s unlikely that Steyn would get many games considering the foreign composition of the side. GL doesn’t have star Indian bowlers. But the presence of Bravo and Faulkner would certainly boost their death bowling. All in all, they have a very decent side with some top-performers in their ranks. They might not look the most menacing side but yet they are no mucks as well. They can certainly surprise us, this season.
Well, Kings XI Punjab, which ended up on the bottom, last season would look to make amends, this season. They have retained their old side though George Bailey was released from the squad while their star batsman, Virender Sehwag has also retired from international cricket and IPL. The Proteas middle-order batsman, David Miller will lead the side and comes on the back of leading only three times in domestic cricket.
This team’s fortunes will rest upon the shoulders of Australia’s trio of Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell and Mitchell Johnson apart from the captain himself. Though in Murali Vijay, Manan Vohra, Gurkeerat Singh Mann and Wriddhiman Saha, they have some quality Indian faces on the batting front. Mohit Sharma, Sandeep Sharma, Anureet Singh and Shardul Thakur makes up for a promising fast bowling attack with Kyle Abbott and Johnson as the foreign pacers. The economic Axar Patel and the aggressive mystery spinner, KC Cariappa form the spinning stocks of the team. They have a really balanced side with some promising and high-quality players.
KXIP are yet to lift the IPL trophy and would look to finally make this season, theirs and for that, a winning start would do the world of good to them. It seems we are up for an exciting thriller at PCA stadium, Mohali, which is renowned for producing true and sporting wickets. Generally, at this venue, there is a bit of assistance for everyone. Dew doesn’t account for much of an impact here.
KXIP Predicted XI: Murali Vijay, Manan Vohra, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, David Miller (C), Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Wriddhiman Saha (WK), Akshar Patel, Sandeep Sharma, Mohit Sharma, Mitchell Johnson.
Gujarat Lions Predicted XI: Brendon McCullum, Dwayne Smith/ Aaron Finch, Suresh Raina (C), Dinesh Karthik, Ishan Kishan, Dwayne Bravo, Ravindra Jadeja, James Faulkner, Pravin Tambe, Praveen Kumar, Dhawal Kulkarni.
TV Channel: Sony ESPN, Sony ESPN HD, Sony Six, Sony Six
HD, Sony Max
Online Stream: www.starsports.com , Hotstar App
Match Date: 11 April 2016, Monday
Match Timing: 20:00 IST, 14:30 GMT
Match Venue: Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium, Mohali.