IPL 2021, Qualifier 1: Chennai Super Kings elect to field
The 2021 Indian Premier League (IPL) season has finally entered its playoffs stage after 56 league matches spread across two phases. Delhi Capitals and Chennai Super Kings are locking horns in the Qualifier 1 at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. The winner of the clash will directly march into the grand finale. MS Dhoni has won the toss and elected to field first.
Here is the head-to-head record
Chennai have had the edge over Delhi as far as the IPL head-to-head record is concerned. In 25 meetings, CSK have won 15 encounters with a win percentage of 60. Meanwhile, DC have managed to win 10 matches. Notably, DC have won the last four matches against CSK. They are unbeaten against the Yellow Army since the start of 2020 season.
Pitch report and TV listing
The Dubai International Cricket Stadium is hosting the match. It will begin at 7:30 PM IST. The surface has been on the slower side of late. Notably, the last seven matches here have been won by the teams batting second. One can watch the match live on the Star Sports Network and stream the same on the Hotstar app (paid subscription).
Rishabh Pant vs MS Dhoni
At 24 years and six days, Rishabh Pant has become the youngest player to lead a side in a playoff match in the IPL. On the other hand, MS Dhoni is now the second player aged above 40 to do so after Rahul Dravid in 2013. DC are eyeing their maiden IPL title, while CSK have won the trophy thrice (2010, 2011, and 2018).
Key details about the playoff round
The winner of the Qualifier 1 (DC vs CSK) will proceed to the final. Meanwhile, the loser will play the winner of Eliminator (RCB vs KKR) in the Qualifier 2. The winner of the Qualifier 2 will advance to the grand finale.
Here are the two teams
Delhi Capitals (Playing XI): Shikhar Dhawan, Prithvi Shaw, Rishabh Pant (captain and wicket-keeper), Shreyas Iyer, Shimron Hetmyer, Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Kagiso Rabada, Tom Curran, Avesh Khan, Anrich Nortje Chennai Super Kings (Playing XI): Ruturaj Gaikwad, Faf du Plessis, Moeen Ali, Robin Uthappa, Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni (captain and wicket-keeper), Ravindra Jadeja, Dwayne Bravo, Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar, Josh Hazlewood
Tom Curran replaces Ripal Patel in the DC XI
CSK are playing the same XI in the Qualifier 1. Meanwhile, DC have brought in all-rounder Tom Curran in place of Ripal Patel. The Capitals have turned to the English all-rounder as Marcus Stoinis is still out with injury. Curran has previously represented Kolkata Knight Riders and Rajasthan Royals in the IPL. He has scored 127 runs and picked up 10 wickets so far.