IPL 2011: Deccan and Punjab hunt for momentum

first_imgAfter breaking their home jinx with a 33-run win against Royal Challengers Bangalore on Thursday, a confident Deccan Chargers unit will take on the Adam Gilchrist-led Kings XI Punjab, who are equally on a high after their splendid victory over defending champions Chennai Super Kings.One can expect a cracking contest at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Uppal on Saturday, as both teams square off after recording convincing victories in their previous matches after not so great starts.Interestingly for both wicketkeeper captains Kumar Sangakkara and Gilchrist, it will be a reversal of roles as they will be pitted against sides they have captained last season.While Gilchrist was the Chargers’ skipper for the last two editions, Sangakkara had unsuccessfully led the Kings XI during their worst-ever finish last season. It will not only be a test of Sangakkara and Gilchrist’s leadership but also for the likes of Bharat Chipli and Paul Valthaty would like to show world that they aren’t one-trick ponies.All eyes will certainly be on 27-year-old Valthaty, who captured the imagination of the nation after smashing 120 not out off only 63 balls. The Uppal pitch will help the batsmen and, if Valthaty can get going, the crowd will be in for some entertainment.The 2009 champions Chargers started off on a disastrous note, losing their first couple of matches against the Rajasthan Royals and Kolkata Knight Riders. The victory on Thursday would have definitely helped them feel relaxed as they play their third match at home.Chipli sparkled against Bangalore and he will be expected to continue his big-hitting against Praveen Kumar and co. Kings XI will also expect that skipper Gilchrist to fire along with bighitters like Abhishek Nayar and Sunny Singh.advertisementChargers skipper Sangakkara feels that he has the ideal pacespin combination to unsettle the opposition. South African speedster Dale Steyn, who leads the pace attack for the Chargers, is in great form and leads the wickets tally for his team with six scalps. Ishant Sharma also bowled well against RCB and claimed his first wicket of the tournament.Gilchrist, whose bowlers took a bit of a pounding at the hands of Murali Vijay and MS Dhoni, will hope that they get their acts together. Praveen had provided crucial breakthroughs at the onset but hasn’t really been effective at the death. Piyush Chawla has also failed to exert any influence.-With PTI inputslast_img

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