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IPL 10, Match 9: Pune v Delhi

Wisden India logo Wisden India 11-04-2017 Wisden India staff

Pune Supergiant and Delhi Daredevils, both hurting from losses in their last games, will aim to bounce back when they lock horns on Tuesday (April 11) at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune.

Kings XI Punjab, courtesy a Glenn Maxwell assault, overpowered Pune with a six-wicket win, while Delhi slipped to a 15-run defeat against Royal Challengers Bangalore despite a gritty knock from Rishabh Pant over the weekend.

© IANS

Pune have the big names. Ajinkya Rahane has looked in good nick in the two games so far, Steven Smith has been his usually busy self and Ben Stokes has showed glimpses of the damage he can cause with both bat and ball. Smith, however, will be hoping for a better performance from his bowlers, especially the pacers.

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Ashok Dinda was expensive in both games. Stokes and Imran Tahir, who took 3 for 28 in his four overs of legspin against Mumbai Indians at the same venue in their campaign opener, too went for runs against Maxwell. Pune might give Dinda a break, with one of Ishwar Pandey, Jaydev Unadkat or Shardul Thakur offering bowling options.

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Delhi are missing the big names, relying instead on their squad of young turks to deliver. With Aditya Tare and Sam Billings getting the team off to a good start, the side will be hoping for Sanju Samson and Karun Nair to fire as well. Pant, who joined the team last week after his father’s funeral, showed his tenacity and mental resolve to slam his way to a 36-ball 57 against Bangalore; this IPL will be a test of consistency for the 19-year-old, who will have to back himself to deliver in crunch situations.

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Chris Morris and Carlos Brathwaite haven’t come into their own yet, but the Delhi think-tank might give the duo more time before considering bringing in Corey Anderson, given the nature of the strip at the MCA Stadium, which promises to be a high-scoring venue where the average score is around 170. The Brathwaite-Stokes encounter also holds some intrigue. Both players spoke about moving on from the ICC World T20 2016 final when the national sides met last month, but memories of that night in India, where Brathwaite smacked Stokes for four consecutive sixes, will linger.

Head-to-head record:

Played 2. Pune 2. Delhi 0

This will be the first time both teams will be playing at the MCA Stadium.

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