We have opted for a fantasy cricket team based on the recent performances, overall impact, and credit points.
MCA Stadium Pitch Report for Today’s Match
Although run-making at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune hasn’t been a challenging task, the wicket has been on the slower side. Given the slightly bigger ground dimensions, the spinners have enjoyed displaying their skills and forcing the batters into playing false strokes.
Probable Playing XIs for Punjab & Lucknow Super Giants (LSG)
Probable XI for Punjab: Mayank Agarwal (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Jonny Bairstow*, Liam Livingstone*, Jitesh Sharma (wk), Bhanuka Rajapaksa*, Rishi Dhawan, Kagiso Rabada*, Rahul Chahar, Sandeep Sharma/Vaibhav Arora, Arshdeep Singh
Probable XI for Lucknow Super Giants (LSG): Quinton de Kock* (wk), KL Rahul (c), Manish Pandey, Krunal Pandya, Deepak Hooda, Ayush Badoni, Marcus Stoinis*, Jason Holder*, Dushmantha Chameera*, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohsin Khan/Avesh Khan
Power Players for Punjab vs LSG Match
Jason Holder has bagged 9 wickets in this edition. He is also a neat catcher in the slips and outfield, which helps generate handy fantasy points. Although he is yet to fire with the willow, we know what he is capable of.
Between the belligerent Punjab batters, there is the calmness and assurance of Shikhar Dhawan. The opener in his own smart way has accumulated 302 runs at 43.14, including the highest score of 88.
It is tough to see KL Rahul throwing away his wicket, especially in the powerplay. In trying to play through the innings, he has already smashed 2 unbeaten centuries in this edition.
Smart Picks for Punjab vs LSG Match
Ravi Bishnoi might not be amongst the wickets in every game, but the impulsive Punjab middle-order could falter in the process of attacking the leg-spinner.
In whatever limited opportunities Bhanuka Rajapaksa has got, he has added quick runs for Punjab. In the last match against Chennai too, the southpaw scored a brisk 42.
Given the slow pitch and slightly bigger ground dimensions, Rahul Chahar will enjoy bowling at Pune. He is the leading wicket-taker (10) for Punjab this season.
See the ball, hit the ball: this has been Liam Livingstone’s mantra. With three 60s in 8 innings, he has grabbed the attention of fantasy players. On his day, he could also end up breaking partnerships with his spin bowling.
LSG will be thrilled with the fact that Krunal Pandya is lending great balance and depth to their squad. Besides bowling across various phases of the game, he has also been used as a floater in the batting order. He has the highest score of 42 and a three-wicket haul to his name.
Although Arshdeep Singh has been bowling well, especially in the final overs, he has picked up only 3 wickets in 8 games. In fantasy cricket, such numbers don’t make great reading.
With scores of 8, 12, 12, 9, and 6, Jonny Bairstow has failed to live up to his reputation. Moreover, he is not keeping wickets either. Given his recent slump, Punjab might consider dropping him for the next game.
Mayank Agarwal too will be disappointed with his below-par performance in this edition. Barring a half-century against an ordinary Mumbai attack, he has nothing much to show.
Punjab vs LSG Match Preview
Both sides will be meeting for the first time in this tournament. While the Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) have 10 points in 8 matches, Punjab have 8 points in as many games.
On paper, LSG appear a far more balanced side as compared to their opponents who thrive largely on their power-packed batting line-up.
Time: 29 April, 7.30 PM IST