Kochi aim for another upset, take on defending champs CSK

Updated: Apr 17, 2011, 19:42 PM IST

Kochi: The stunning win over Mumbai Indians gave IPL debutants Kochi Tuskers Kerala the fillip they desperately needed and the side would be aiming to spring a surprise once again when they take on another heavyweights, defending champions Chennai Super Kings, on Monday.

Kochi upstaged Mumbai by a comprehensive eight wickets to clinch their maiden IPL win after facing defeats in their opening two matches.

Captain Mahela Jayawardene said the win should now ensure that rivals take his team more seriously.

The destructive Brendon McCullum came into his own against Mumbai and with some crucial support from Jayawardene and India all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, Kochi managed to pip Mumbai despite a solid century by their captain Sachin Tendulkar.

"We have to keep fighting till the last. I think the rival teams will take us a little more seriously now following this victory. It gives us confidence as well," Jayawardene had said after the shock win.

The Sri Lankan veteran would hope for a similar performance from his team against Chennai at the Nehru stadium here.

The bowling, however, is a big concern for Kochi as pace spearhead S Sreesanth and spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan have both been off colour, prompting Jayawardene to drop the duo in the match against Mumbai.

R P Singh also continues to struggle to not just take wickets but also stem the flow of runs in the fourth edition of the league.

R Vinay Kumar and Sri Lankan medium pacer Thisara Perera can also expect to be put through a tough test by the formidable Chennai batting, bolstered by the return of Michael Hussey.

Besides the prolific left-hander from Australia, Chennai, with the likes of skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Suresh Raina, veteran New Zealander Scott Styris and South Africa`s Albie Morkel, have the forepower to bat any opposition out of the game.

Chairman of selectors Kris Srikkanth`s son S Aniruddha has also been an exciting find for the team in this edition of the league.

Chennai have had a fairly successful campaign winning two of their three matches so far -- the only defeat being a result of the sensational Paul Valthaty`s brilliance with the bat.

Their bowlers too have been putting up decent performances with Morkel, Tim Southee, Ravichandran Ashwin and Suraj Randiv sharing enough wickets among themselves. Going into tomrrow`s match, Chennai certainly have the momentum but Kochi too have a spring in their step after the win over Mumbai.

And given the unpredictability of the Twenty20 format, it doesn`t take much time for a change in momentum.

The teams (from): Kochi Tuskers Kerala: Mahela Jayawardene (capt), Brendon McCullum, Parthiv Patel (wk), VVS Laxman, Owais Shah, Brad Hodge,Ravindra Jadeja, Thisara Perera, Rudra Pratap Singh, Ramesh Powar, R Vinay Kumar, Muttiah Muralitharan, B Akhil, Chandan Madan, Deepak Chougule, Kedar Jadav, Raiphi Gomez, Sushant Marathe, Tanmay Srivastava, Y Gnaneswara Rao, Yashpal Singh, Prasanth Padmanabhan, Steven Smith, John Hastings.

Chennai Super Kings: MS Dhoni (capt & wk), Srikkanth Anirudha, Ravichandran Ashwin, Subramaniam Badrinath, George Bailey, Doug Bollinger, Dwayne Bravo, Faf du Plessis, Ben Hilfenhaus, Michael Hussey, Shadab Jakati, Joginder Sharma, Suraj Randiv, Nuwan Kulasekara, Yo Mahesh, Albie Morkel, Abhinav Mukund, Suresh Raina, Wriddhiman Saha, Tim Southee, Scott Styris, Sudeep Tyagi, Kuthethurshri Vasudevadas, Ganapathi Vignesh, Murali Vijay.

PTI