The Southern derby between Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) is set to take place as the two sides will lock horns against each other in Match 22 of the ongoing IPL 2022. The encounter will be played at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai today (April 12).
Both sides will lead into the game in contrasting forms. While it is the very first instance where CSK have lost their four consecutive opening fixtures, RCB are on a winning streak after grabbing their last three games convincingly.
CSK’s very own Faf Du Plessis will lead his Bangalore team against Chennai for the first time. The five-time champions are indeed missing his services at the top with the bat. Last year’s Orange Cap winner Ruturaj Gaikwad hasn’t had an ideal start to the IPL 2022, while Robin Uthappa’s fiery starts are short-lived.
Nevertheless, given their eminence in the marquee league, one can never write off the Super Kings. They even enjoyed a better head-to-head record against their southern neighbors, winning 18 out of the 28 encounters played between the two sides. RCB, on the other hand, might feel that they can surely better their record this time around.
Ahead of today’s high-octane clash, we predict three batters who might score the most runs in the game.
#3. Moeen Ali (CSK)
While we haven’t seen the best of Moeen Ali so far, the Englishman came into his own in the previous game against the Sunrisers Hyderabad. He top-scorred for his side with a 35-ball 48, including three boundaries and a couple of sixes.
The 34-year old has been a consistent run-getter for the Super Kings, especially on Indian soil. In his last nine outings in India, Moeen has recorded scores of 25 or more seven times.
The left-hander has an immense role to play for CSK at number three, with the openers not having much of an impact so far.
#2. Virat Kohli (RCB)
Similar to Moeen, Virat Kohli also hasn’t been putting up big scores in recent times but looked in great touch in his previous IPL encounter. Playing against the Mumbai Indians, the former RCB skipper clobbered five classy boundaries and helped his side chase down the total with his 48 off 36.
The Delhi-born veteran will look to mount his first big score of the season as he will be up against one of his favorite hunting teams. In his 28 innings against CSK, Kohli has amassed 962 runs at an excellent average of 40 and a strike rate of 127. He has even nine 50+ scores against the Men in Yellow. His recent scores against them are 53, 8, 50 and 90*.
#1. Ruturaj Gaikwad (CSK)
Ruturaj Gaikwad has had a torrid start to the IPL 2022. In his first three matches of the campaign, he recorded scores of 0,1 and 1. However, in the previous game against SRH, the right-hander looked far more comfortable and even scored three good-looking boundaries before T Natarajan’s perfect inswinging delivery outclassed Gaikwad.
Given how he has performed in previous seasons, the CSK opener has a knack for coming back strong after enduring tough starts to the campaign. Much like this season, Gaikwad also experienced a poor run of form in the first few matches of the 2020 and 2021 seasons as well. He, however, then went on a run-making spree, scoring three consecutive half-centuries in 2020 and amassing 615 runs in 13 games last year.
Moreover, the 25-year old likes to play against the Bangalore-based franchise, scoring 136 runs in three innings with an immaculate average of 68 and a strike rate of 133. Considering his great talent and record, Gaikwad is too good a player to miss out on another opportunity and will look for his first big score of the season tonight.