Rahul Tripathi receives the adulation of KKR teammates after the win over DC. (PC: IPLT20.com)

IPL 2021: Dale Steyn and Sanjay Manjrekar predict CSK to beat KKR and win the tournament

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IPL 2021: Dale Steyn and Sanjay Manjrekar predict CSK to beat KKR and win the tournament

Information about IPL 2021: Dale Steyn and Sanjay Manjrekar predict CSK to beat KKR and win the tournament

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Former South African speedster Dale Steyn feels that Kolkata Knight Riders’ (KKR) luck, “bad decisions” and the poor form of some senior players will catch up with them in the final. He explained it with an amusing casino roulette analogy, saying that even after 10 blacks in a row, “red’s going to hit” at some point.

KKR went past one of IPL 2021’s top teams, Delhi Capitals (DC), in the final over of the second Qualifier. Despite dominating most of the match, KKR batsmen almost played it into the hands of their opponents by collapsing from 123-1 to 130-7 within five overs. It took a six from Rahul Tripathi under pressure to get them over the line and set up an IPL 2012-reboot final against Chennai Super Kings (CSK).

While speaking to ESPNcricinfo, Dale Steyn said:

“I kind of have always played numbers. It’s like going to a casino. If it lands on black 10 times in a row then at some point red’s going to hit. I just feel that at some point KKR’s luck is going to catch up to them. Bad decisions and lack of form of Morgan and DK that kind of stuff is going to catch up to them. It almost did tonight and it might happen at the worst time and that’s the final.”

Dale Steyn added that CSK have looked the calmer side this season and are likely to be a bit too good for KKR in the final. He added:

“CSK look good, really calm. They look like they kind of have got going up in the right direction at the right time. Dhoni looked good the other night, he’s captained his team well. Their batters are looking good… I just think that KKR might come against a better team in the final.”

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KKR and CSK have gone against each other 27 times in the IPL. CSK have won 17 of these matches, including both in IPL 2021. However, KKR have a 100 percent win record in the IPL finals, winning the trophy in 2012 and 2014.


Seeing the panic set in KKR, I’m going with CSK as favorites: Sanjay Manjrekar

Speaking in the same interaction, Sanjay Manjrekar also called CSK the favorites to win their fourth IPL title. He explained that while a likely flat wicket in Dubai would be out of the comfort zone for both teams, MS Dhoni’s side are better than the “panicked” KKR unit. The former Indian batter explained:

“Both teams would have liked a slow turner because that’s where Chennai is very good at using Deepak Chahar and [DJ] Bravo and others and Kolkata as well, in using the spinners. So this is slightly outside their comfort zone. This is a difficult game to call. And as I said earlier, most teams are carrying one major weakness that can just come undone on the big night but looking at the way things are and at Dhoni, how he manages the limitations, I am going with CSK as favorites. And especially after watching the panic set in Kolkata’s run chase, you know, you start feeling doubtful about it.”

Manjrekar concluded by advising Eoin Morgan and KKR coach Brendon McCullum to be a ‘little brave’ and pragmatic while picking the team for the final. He said KKR should identify the ‘deadwood’ players and replace them with those who might be better equipped to handle the pressure. He argued:

“Now, here is where I want Morgan and Brendon McCullum to get a little brave and identify the deadwood that’s there in the team, not just feel emotional about it and keep players in just because they have reached the finals. They have got to look at this win as a major defeat and find out the guys who can get exposed again on the big night and deal with that.”

The IPL 2021 final between KKR and CSK will commence at 7:30 PM IST in Dubai on Friday.


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