There are still three teams without a single point who have the chance to get on the points table in the matches today. Central Districts from New Zealand will play their Trans-Tasman neighbors Victoria Bushrangers, and the Indian Ocean neighbours Chennai Super Kings play Wayamba from Sri Lanka.
Whoever loses in the first game will still be without points and that could well mean an early exit from the tournament, for it will be extremely hard if not impossible to qualify after losing two games out of four.
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The runners up of last year, Victoria Bushrangers, were beaten quite convincingly by the Warriors and but for some lusty hitting by the last wicket batsmen, the Bushrangers would have suffered an even more embarrassing defeat.
They seem to have a good team with some of their players not only representing Australia in the T-20 format, but also in the IPL. That means there is a lot of experience there and, as we have seen, a blend of experience and youth make for a potent combination.
David Hussey has to fire for the Victorian team, for the batting revolves around him and, with Andrew McDonald, another experienced international, there is depth in the batting. There is also Brad Hodge, one of the most underrated batsmen in the game, and he can get the team off to a blazing start.
However, the pressure will be on Victoria since they have lost the first game, and they would welcome the chance to play the team from New Zealand because they, along with Guyana, seem to be the more inexperienced teams in the competition.
The Stags are missing Ross Taylor alright, but it’s an opportunity for the other players like Doug Bracewell, who was impressive in the first game, to show that they too have the skills and temperament to shine on the big stage.
The Chennai Super Kings showed great character by recovering splendidly after losing their first four wickets with not too many runs on the board. The extra bounce of the Kingsmead pitch did in the early order including Hayden, and it was left to Badrinath to wage a battle in the company of Anirudha Srikkanth, and take the Chennai team to a total of safety.
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Badrinath had been fighting a battle to get the India cap for a long long time, so he is used to going into tough situations, sticking it out and then getting on top of the bowlers which is exactly what he did. Young Anirudha gave him terrific support and when a senior player gets such support, then he is confident that he can play his shots and not worry about the batsman at the other end.
Wayamba is a good team and will take some beating, but if the Chennai Super Kings play to their potential, they should notch up another win.
Professional Management Group