Lucknow Super Giants Recent Form
Lucknow Super Giants have been described as the ‘motley crew’ of the IPL this season, having compiled a squad made up of some pretty left-field picks.
Who would have thought that veteran Andrew Tye still had it in him to still play at IPL level? Who could have guessed that Deepak Hooda would be an early contender for Player of the Tournament? And who on earth had ever heard of youngster Ayush Badoni, let alone expected him to cause such a splash early on?
But under the calm leadership of KH Rahul they hit back after an early loss to Gujarat and won their next two to climb up the table and make a statement that they’re not here just to make up the numbers, they’re here to have a real go at winning it in their very first season.
SRH will probably prove to be one of the weaker sides in this year’s tournament but Lucknow had to fight hard for their win against them on Monday.
They recovered from the loss of early wickets to post a decent total and defended it extremely well by regularly taking wickets and not letting anyone in that SRH line-up get to 50.
Avesh Khan was man-of-the-match for his brilliant 4-24 after KL Rahul had shone with the bat, scoring 68 off 50.
The Super Giants are currently fifth.
I’d been campaigning (on this site, at least) for the inclusion of Jason Holder in the place of Dushmantha Chameera and the Lucknow management may (or may not) have been reading my SRH v Lucknow preview, because that’s exactly what they did ahead of that win over Hyderabad.
Holder played a quick but important cameo of eight off three with the bat, before coming back to take three wickets in the final over of the match.
Sooner or later they’re going to have to make some tough choices when Marcus Stoinis becomes available after returning from international duty with Australia, with one of Evin Lewis or Andrew Tye having to make way.
That’s not the case just yet. But those two are very much fighting for their places.
Player to Watch: Jason Holder
So let’s talk about Jason Holder.
For a player of his undoubted quality, he hasn’t had too many chances in the IPL over the years.
But that’s a missed trick by all the sides who didn’t realise what a valuable player he can be.
For two years he was in and out of the SRH side, never really nailing down a place as they often played Rashid Khan alongside three overseas batsmen- normally David Warner, Kane Williamson and Jonny Bairstow- meaning there was no place for the West Indies all-rounder.
But he was excellent in the few opportunities he did get, especially with the ball.
For the past two seasons he averaged two wickets a game, absolutely world class numbers.
If he’d played a full season with SRH making the Playoffs these last two years, based on those numbers he would practically have won the Purple Cap for the past two seasons!
But let’s not forget he also bats, adding great balance to any side.
It will be hard for him to top score with the bat given he comes in at six or seven, but for the record he’s 21.0 in this game to be Lucknow top batsman.
Of greater interest is the 4.0 he’s their top bowler and even the 13.0 he’s man-of-the-match.
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Lucknow’s Likely XI
Rahul, de Kock, Lewis, Pandey, Hooda, Badoni, Krunal Pandya, Holder, Tye, Bishnoi, Khan.
Delhi Capitals’s Recent Form
Delhi Capitals will have felt they were very much in the game at the halfway mark against Gujarat, knowing they had 172 to chase. Up to that point, chasers had won almost every game of the 2022 edition of the IPL.
But it wasn’t to be. There were starts from the likes of Lalit Yadav and Rovman Powell but neither kicked on. Rishabh Pant was good for his 43 off 29 but no-one got to 50 and in the end it cost them, falling 15 runs short.
But they’re doing ok so far with one win from two and will fancy their chances of at least making the Playoffs after strong showings in the last couple of seasons.
Having retained Prithvi Shaw, they’ll expect big things from him after a relatively slow start with scores of 38 and 10.
Lungi Ngidi and Mustafizur Rahman are both available after returning from international duty. It was odd then that rather than picking the pair of them last time out, they only went with Rahman, who by the way, was excellent with 3-23.
They had two overseas spots available but only used one of them.
Mitch Marsh is injured but the good news for Delhi fans is that he’s already in India so his quarantine period will be over by the time the next match after this one comes along.
The Delhi management hope to have him available for their next game against KKR on the 10th.
As for David Warner, Delhi expect him to play here.
If Ngidi comes in, Tim Seifert will have to make way but if they leave Ngidi out again, they can play Warner as an opener and play Seifert in the middle-order if they wish.
Player to Watch: Axar Patel
It’s been a good year for Axar Patel, who has featured for India in all three formats and largely been very good.
He was impressive for Delhi last season too, taking 15 wickets in 12 games and going at just 6.65 an over.
He doesn’t get the chance to bat for very long but we’ve seen him play some decent cameos over the years and sooner or later he’ll be hoping to get that maiden fifty in the IPL.
Given he’s pretty handy in the field and he’s one of the very few three-dimensional players in the game.
Like Shaw, he was one of their retained players, so he really needs to kick on. It’s 4.29 with 10CRIC that he’s their top bowler in this game.
Delhi Capitals’ Likely XI
Shaw, Warner, Seifert, Pant, Lalit Yadav, Powell, Patel, Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Ahmed, Rahman.
Venue & conditions
The first week provided a foolproof way of making money in the IPL: bat the side chasing at any stage on Live Betting and you could start counting your money.
But these things don’t last forever and all four games between Friday and Monday were won by the side batting first.
The DY Patil Stadium has been an interesting wicket so far.
RCB managed a score of over 200 here, which Punjab chased.
Then the Royals posted 193 here against Mumbai, enough to win the game. And on Monday Lucknow scored 169, 10 runs too many for SRH, as we described already.
In the middle of all that, KKR had a shocker first up against RCB after scoring just 128. It was interesting that RCB found that total challenging, only getting there in the final over.
So that KKR anomaly aside, this is a pretty high-scoring ground. The par score looks to be about 185 and if that’s what the side batting first gets it’s very much ‘game on’ for both teams.