Chennai Super Kings and Gujarat Titans take on each other in the final of IPL 2023 on Sunday. The match at Narendra Modi Stadium will either see CSK getting crowned as IPL champions for a record-equalling fifth time or Gujarat Titans successfully defending their IPL title. What would boost GT’s hopes is the fact that they have won three of the four matches against CSK. On the other hand, a mini motivation for the MS Dhoni-led side is that CSK defeated GT by 15 runs in the most recent game between the sides.
Before the final match kicks off, let’s have a look at the key battles that are likely to take place during the game –
CSK pacer Deepak Chahar is finally back in his groove, picking 12 wickets in the last five matches. His swing at the start makes him almost unplayable at times during powerplay. GT’s in-form opener and Orange Cap holder Shubman Gill could face a tough challenge from the star pacer with a veteran MS Dhoni guiding his bowlers from behind the stumps.
CSK openers vs Mohammed Shami
The openers of CSK — Ruturaj Gaikwad and Devon Conway — have been the top scorers for the side. While Gaikwad has scored over 564 runs across 15 matches, the tally of Conway is 625 from 15 matches. However, both the batters have a real threat in GT’s star pacer Mohammed Shami, who is also the Purple Cap holder. The right-arm speedster has dominated Gaikwad in the past, while he has been excellent with the ball against Conway in IPL 2023.
Moeen Ali vs Rashid Khan-Noor Ahmed Pair
The spin pair of Rashid Khan and Noor Ahmed strengthen Gujarat Titans’ bowling in the middle overs. Batters, who have tried to take them on, have lost their wickets more often than not. On the other hand, Moeen is adept at taking the spinners to the cleaners. Though he has not gotten many opportunities to bat this season, CSK might use him as a weapon against the GT spin duo.
MS Dhoni vs Hardik Pandya
Ahead of anything will be the healthy fight between the strategies of the two captains – MS Dhoni and Hardik Pandya. One is a world-class leader, while the other is an emerging one with a promising future in the role. In Qualifier 1, Dhoni’s men finished on top but it will be interesting to see who outsmarts whom in the summit clash.
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