The festival of the Indian Premier League is upon us as the IPL 2022 edition of the tournament is set to begin on March 26. The first match of the tournament will feature defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) taking on Kolkata Knight Riders in Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
This edition of the tournament will see two new teams being added to the mix in Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) and Gujarat Titans (GT), making the IPL 2022 a ten-team event.
The first match of the IPL 15 will see two new captains in Ravindra Jadeja of Chennai Super Kings and Shreyas Iyer of Kolkata Knight Riders making their leadership debut for their respective franchises.
While Shreyas Iyer has captained Delhi Capitals before, it will be captaincy debut for Jadeja in the Indian Premier League. Also, there have been major changes in the squad of both the teams as well after the IPL 2022 mega auction.
Keeping that in mind, Team COC presents the Predicted Playing XIs for the first match of the IPL 2022 between CSK and KKR.
CHENNAI SUPER KINGS
The Chennai Super Kings (CSK) gave a huge shock before the first match as their mercurial captain MS Dhoni relinquished the leadership position and handed over the reins to Ravindra Jadeja. As for the availability of players, they will be without the services of Moeen Ali and Dwaine Pretorius for the first match.
This means Ruturaj Gaikwad might get to open with Devon Conway of New Zealand. CSK then has the experienced duo of Ambati Rayudu and Robin Uthappa to hold together the middle order. The lower middle order will have the services of new captain Ravindra Jadeja and former skipper MS Dhoni, with possibly Shivam Dube for company.
Dwayne Bravo is expected to continue and provide experience lower down the order, especially in absence of Deepak Chahar who is out of contention due to his quad tear.
New Zealand’s Adam Milne is expected to be the first choice fast bowler with possibly India’s U19 World Cup winner Rajvardhan Hangargekar partnering him in the pace department. As for the second spinner slot, expect either Mitchell Santner or Sri Lanka’s Maheesh Theekshana partnering Ravindra Jadeja.
KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS
The KKR team had an amazing resurgence in the second half of the IPL 2021 edition where they reached the finals, despite being in the bottom half of the points table during the first half.
However, with the new IPL 2022 edition, KKR also finds itself with some new players and a new captain in Shreyas Iyer. They will also have a few players who will be joining the squad late in Aaron Finch and Pat Cummins, as Cricket Australia has mandated their players to join the IPL only after April 6.
This means England’s Sam Billings might open the innings for KKR along with Venkatesh Iyer. Shreyas Iyer and Nitish Rana will follow the openers next. Sheldon Jackson is expected to pick up the keeping gloves for the KKR team.
Andre Russell and Sunil Narine are expected to do wonders for the KKR team given that the franchise has put their trust in them and retained the duo over some other players. They have been blowing hot and cold in the last few editions of the IPL.
As for the bowling department, Varun Chakravarthy will be their main spinner with Narine. Umesh Yadav and Shivam Mavi are expected to be the fast bowlers and with Cummins absent, Chamika Karunaratne might get a chance to fill in as bowling all-rounder.
CSK COC Predicted Playing XI:
Devon Conway, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Robin Uthappa, Ambati Rayudu, Ravindra Jadeja (C), MS Dhoni (WK), Shivam Dube, Dwayne Bravo, Rajvardhan Hangargekar, Adam Milne, Maheesh Theekshana
KKR COC Predicted Playing XI:
Sam Billings, Venkatesh Iyer, Shreyas Iyer (C), Nitish Rana, Sheldon Jackson (WK), Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Chamika Karunaratne, Umesh Yadav, Shivam Mavi, Varun Chakravarthy