IPL 2021: Why IPL schedule a setback to Chennai Super Kings and advantageous for Royal Challengers Bangalore
League games on neutral venues
As per the IPL Governing Council, the fixtures of the tournament have been mapped in a way that every team will travel only three times during the league stage. It will therefore reduce commute and minimising the risk of infection.
Doing away with the concept of home and away matches are certainly going to impact the teams heavily for the franchises pick up the squad taking home and away matches into consideration.
It will rob the teams of the advantage they seem to enjoy while playing at home because every side tries to make the most out of home conditions and win as many games as possible to finish at the top of the points table.
Over the years, the league has witnessed that the chances of teams making it to the play-offs increase with its domination at home. However, it is not going the case, this time around.
No home game to hamper Chennai Super Kings?
Chennai Super Kings are one of the teams who have had the mastery over making the best use of home conditions. The MS Dhoni-led side had made Chepauk it’s fortress for it didn’t lose much at home and that ensured the Yellow Army entered the playoffs season after season.
Last year, CSK failed to make it to the playoffs for the first time in their history and the prime reason for that was poor batting and the spin attack was rendered ineffective on UAE tracks.
Fans are expecting a better show from the Yellow Brigade but the fact that they won’t be playing at Chepauk makes the job a little tough for coach Stephen Fleming’s team.
Task cut out for CSK pacers
In IPL 14, the Super Kings will play five league games in Mumbai, four in Delhi, three in Bengaluru and two in Kolkata i.e. ten out of their 14 games will be played at Wankhede Stadium, M Chinnaswamy Stadium and Eden Gardens.
All these grounds are known for their flat tracks and short boundaries and their spin heavy attack might just not suit such pitches. They have proven to be the graveyards for spinners.
It will be tough for CSK spinners like Imran Tahir, Ravindra Jadeja, Moeen Ali, Karn Sharma, R Sai Kishore to contain the batsmen on not so spin-friendly pitches.
None of CSK pacers bowl at a threatening pace and great accuracy which is crucial for success on such tracks. The likes of Deepak Chahar, Lungi Ngidi, Shardul Thakur, Josh Hazlewood, Sam Curran, Dwyane Bravo will have their tasks cut out in IPL 2021 for none of them bowls with that extra bit of pace like Jasprit Bumrah, Kagiso Rabada, Chris Morris, Anrich Nortje, etc.
A winning start for ‘lucky’ RCB?
The Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) side might just get to a winning start as they face defending champions Mumbai Indians in the tournament opener.
Mumbai have not won their season opener in the last eight years. Mumbai Indians last won their opening game in the IPL was way back in 2012. Since IPL 2013, their record has been 0-8 in terms of winning the first match of the tournament.
So, RCB – who had a decent show in IPL 2020 – might just get to a winning start in 2021.
IPL 2021 schedule a boon for RCB?
The Virat Kohli-led side made it to the playoffs in IPL 2020, held in UAE, after a gap of four years. One of the biggest reasons that could be attributed to RCB’s good show in IPL 13 was because they were not playing at short M Chinnaswamy Stadium. The grounds in the UAE were bigger in dimension and their spinners weren’t taken on remand by opposition batters, unlike the case in Bengaluru.
Therefore, playing at neutral grounds and not on M Chinnaswamy might just help RCB this time around as well. But the other grounds in India are not too spinner-friendly either but captain Kohli has a quality pace unit at his disposal.
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