IPL 6 first impressions: Sunrisers surprise but Pune are genuinely terrible

While it is early stages in the tournament this year and anything can happen, we have almost completed a week in this year’s IPL and most teams have played two matches each. So this is a good time to see how each team is shaping up.

Kunal Gwalani April 09, 2013 18:30:54 IST
IPL 6 first impressions: Sunrisers surprise but Pune are genuinely terrible

A Super over. Last ball finishes. Plenty of stunning catches and some great fielding. Legends playing for probably the last time and above all fresh auctions expected next year that will change the face of most IPL teams, including your favourite ones.

While it is early stages in the tournament this year and anything can happen, we have almost completed a week in this year’s IPL and most teams have played two matches each. So this is a good time to see how each team is shaping up.

Chennai Super Kings: Have played just the one match against MI so far so it’s a tad early to review. But with the same nucleus to the team as the last five years, expect them to get better as the tournament progresses. The addition of Dirk Nannes will only make them a stronger side. Should be in shoo in for top four slot.

IPL 6 first impressions Sunrisers surprise but Pune are genuinely terrible

Sunrisers have been the surprise team in the early stages of IPL 6. BCCI

Delhi Daredevils: Plagued by injuries in the opening games and the absence of Kevin Pietersen doesn’t help their cause. Virender Sehwag is also woefully out form. Can’t see him making a strong come back, though if he does, it will be a delight to watch. The arrival of Morne Morkel will strengthen the bowling a great deal. Not expecting them in the top four.

Kings XI Punjab: Easily the best fielding side so far in the IPL and an excellent bowling attack to boot. Have a good balance of players but an aging captain could hamper the starts they get as one can’t expect Gilchrist to fire in every match. If the batting supports them, they could squeak into the top four.

Kolkata Knight Riders: Defending Champions. A mixed start to the season so far but look a good solid unit with some great players. Gambhir’s form will be crucial at the top of the order. As the pitches get slower expect Narine to play a bigger role. Kallis and Yusuf Pathan have to come good if they want to make it to the top four.

Mumbai Indians: A mixed start to the IPL. While Ponting has shown aggression in his captaincy, missed a big trick against RCB by sending Pollard in too late. Have not had a stable opening pair since the IPL began but hopefully Ponting and Tendulkar will settle down and play well. The return of Malinga will add strength to the bowling. expect them to get into the top four.

Pune Warriors: A side in utter disarray. They bench their best all rounder in the name of balancing the squad. Add to that some poor strategy and you have a team that is not going to go anywhere in the tournament. Not for nothing have they lost 11 games in a row. Expect them to remain in the bottom four this year too.

Rajasthan Royals: Perennial underdogs in the IPL. What has worked for Rajasthan has been the captains. From Warne to Dravid, two icons of the game. Different styles but both command immense respect and know how to motivate their team to achieve great things. They also have a well balanced side with some great players like Brad Hodge, Ajinkya Rahane and Shane Watson, who will really need to fire if they are to get in to playoffs.

Royal Challengers Bangalore: Chris Gayle plus 10 is how RCB is seen around the country and rightly so. They hardly put themselves in winning positions without him. AB de Villiers is the other big gun along with Virat Kohli. Although a well rounded unit with some big players, will they play for Kohli? A captain inspires his team to success but does Virat Kohli have the respect and awe in the team to inspire his players?

Sunrisers Hyderabad: The surprise package this year so far. Written off by most experts, but they have won two in two. Are they being underestimated as they don’t have star T20 players? Cameron White is not as good as he was a few years back and Sangakkara alone can’t get them home. Shikhar Dhwan’s return will bolster the side and expect Darren Samy to make an impact if he gets a few games. And who can ignore Dale Steyn? Still, I don’t think they have the players to take them in to the playoffs.

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