The Indian Premier League 2023 Qualifier 1 is about to kick off, with the defending champion Gujarat Titans (GT) and the resurgent Chennai Super Kings (CSK) taking the spotlight. GT secured their top position in the league stage by winning an impressive ten out of 14 matches. On the other hand, CSK, led by the legendary MS Dhoni, made a remarkable comeback this season after finishing ninth last year, securing the second spot on the points table.
The upcoming qualifier match between these two teams is scheduled to take place at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on May 23. The stakes are high as the winner of this match will qualify for the finals, while the losing team will have to compete in the second qualifier to reach the summit clash.
It's worth noting that Chennai has never managed to defeat GT in the history of the competition. However, the presence of MS Dhoni, a master of the format, adds an intriguing element to the game. Fans will be eagerly watching Dhoni's tactics in this crucial match.
Additionally, they should keep an eye on Shubman Gill, who has impressed with two consecutive centuries in the ongoing tournament. Moreover, the exceptional performances of Mohammed Shami and Rashid Khan with the ball make CSK's task even more challenging. Ruturaj Gaikwad, Devon Conway, and Shivam Dube will carry the responsibility of scoring runs for CSK.
The pitch at the MA Chidambaram Stadium is gradually slowing down as the matches progress. As a result, winning the coin toss becomes critical. Given the circumstances, batting first would be preferable. However, given GT's formidable bowling lineup, which is known for its ability to defend any target, they may choose to bowl first. On this pitch, a score of 170 or higher is considered a good total.
In the head-to-head record between GT and CSK, the teams have faced each other three times. GT emerged victorious in all three matches. During their most recent encounter on March 31, CSK set a target of 178 runs for GT to chase. The Titans successfully chased it down in 19.2 overs, with Shubman Gill playing a crucial role with his 63 runs off 36 balls. Additionally, Rashid Khan contributed a rapid 10 runs off just three balls.
Chennai Super Kings: MS Dhoni (c), Devon Conway, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ambati Rayudu, Subhranshu Senapati, Moeen Ali, Shivam Dube, Rajvardhan Hangargekar, Dwaine Pretorius, Mitchell Santner, Ravindra Jadeja, Tushar Deshpande, Matheesha Pathirana, Simarjeet Singh, Deepak Chahar, Prashant Solanki, Maheesh Theekshana, Ajinkya Rahane, Ben Stokes, Shaik Rasheed, Nishant Sindhu, Sisanda Magala, Ajay Mandal, Bhagath Varma, Akash Singh.
Gujarat Titans: Hardik Pandya (c), Shubman Gill, David Miller, Abhinav Manohar, B. Sai Sudharsan, Wriddhiman Saha, Matthew Wade, Rashid Khan, Rahul Tewatia, Vijay Shankar, Mohammed Shami, Alzarri Joseph, Yash Dayal, Pradeep Sangwan, Darshan Nalkande, Jayant Yadav, R. Sai Kishore, Noor Ahmad, Dasun Shanaka, Odean Smith, KS Bharat, Shivam Mavi, Urvil Patel, Joshua Little, Mohit Sharma.