Dhoni vs Kohli. The IPL 2019 is starting with a bang as the two biggest icons of Indian cricket lock horns at Chennai.
Chennai Super Kings will take on Royal Challengers Bangalore in the first game of the tournament and although both teams have plenty of superstars, a few players won’t be available for the first match.
Two key players of RCB are currently in UAE playing for their country. Marcus Stoinis who will most probably be seen as an opener and pace bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile are part of Australia’s ODI squad which is currently playing an ODI series against Pakistan.
Hence, RCB will have to find a partner for Parthiv Patel at the top of the order. England all-rounder Moeen Ali could be a possible option as there aren’t many Indian players to pick from.
Coultner-Nile meanwhile can be replaced by Tim Southee.
One of the architect’s of Chennai last year’s IPL triumph, Lungi Ngidi has been ruled out of the entire IPL season due to a shoulder injury.
In his absence, CSK might look at Indian options such as Shardul Thakur, Mohit Sharma and Deepak Chahar.
They also have England seamer David Willy in their ranks for replacing Ngidi.
Chenni Super Kings squad:
MS Dhoni (c), Suresh Raina, Murali Vijay, Ravindra Jadeja, Kedar Jadhav, Ambati Rayudu, Harbhajan Singh, Deepak Chahar, KM Asif, Karn Sharma, Dhruv Shorey, N Jagadeesan, Shardul Thakur, Monu Kumar, Chaitanya Bishnoi, Faf du Plessis, Sam Billings, Mitchell Santner, David Willey, Dwayne Bravo, Shane Watson, Imran Tahir, Mohit Sharma, Ruturaj Gaikwad.
Royal Challengers Bangalore squad:
Virat Kohli (c), Parthiv Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammed Siraj, Washington Sundar, Pawan Negi, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Kulwant Khejroliya, AB de Villiers, Moeen Ali, Colin de Grandhomme, Tim Southee, Shimron Hetmyer, Gurkeerat Singh, Shivam Dube, Devdutt Padikkal, Himmat Singh, Heinrich Klaasen, Milind Kumar, Prayas Ray Barman, Akshdeep Nath