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IPL 2018 Fantasy Guru: Setting up your playoffs team

FEATURED WRITER
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4.92K   //    22 May 2018, 15:15 IST

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Ambati Rayudu

Captain – Ambati Rayudu 

Captaincy preference order: Ambati Rayudu, Kane Williamson, Shikhar Dhawan, 

Differential preference order: Bhuvneshwar Kumar, MS Dhoni, Manish Pande

Guru’s team ahead of CSK vs SRH: A Rayudu, S Dhawan, K Williamson, S Raina, R Tripathi, MS Dhoni, S Watson, K Gowtham, P Krishna, B Kumar, R Khan 

Given the form, they are in and how high they bat up the order, Ambati Rayudu, Shikhar Dhawan and Kane Williamson should be automatic picks for this fixture. So, let’s move on to the next set of players.

There are a number of factors that are working in favour of Suresh Raina here: lack of high-end pace in the Sunrisers Hyderabad bowling attack, him finding some form against Kings XI Punjab, how good he looked against Rashid Khan in the first encounter between the two sides this season, and the Wankhede wicket that is expected to be flat.

Rashid Khan shouldn't have much of an impact today, as the Super Kings have been exceptional against him, but even if he fails, you always have the second qualifier as a compensation, where you will have to bring him in anyway.

The biggest negative with Bhuvneshwar Kumar is the possibility of him running into MS Dhoni at the death, who has consistently got the better of him; although, if that H2H match-up is avoided, he could turn out to be a very good differential. Some new-ball assistance at the top would come in handy too, as both Rayudu and Shane Watson are susceptible to the moving ball. 

Watson might not have it easy, as every single SRH bowler, barring Siddarth Kaul, is capable of getting him out on defence, so going on the aggressive against such a bowling line-up could only make things worse.

However, in some of the knocks he has played so far, he has shown a good understanding of his limitations. And if he is asked to bowl, he can make you bleed for not having him. Leaving him out, hence, is a risk that isn’t worth taking, given the stage of the tournament and his popularity this season. 

Lungi Ngidi’s performance against Kings XI Punjab was largely a result of the kind of deck that Pune dished out, and it wouldn’t be wise expecting that every match. As the tournament has progressed, Shakib Al Hasan’s batting has gone underutilised, while Manish Pandey’s entry could be delayed by Dhawan and Williamson.

MS Dhoni is a comparatively better better bet than these players. He has consistently shown an inclination to come up the order, is in great form, and Rashid is the only threat to him in this bowling line-up. 

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