Ngidi can stake a claim

Ngidi can stake a claim

Gujarat Titans v Delhi Capitals
Saturday 2 April, 15:00
TV: live on BT Sport

Batting a worry

Gujarat Titans are a bowling team. They boast Mohammad Shami, Lockie Ferguson and Rashid Khan, three bowlers who would walk into any franchise in the tournament.

And that’s fine. If the year is 2016. The IPL has moved on to putting all eggs in the batting power basket and in that regard Gujarat are an outlier. Their batting is dreadful.

Any team which ends up with Vijay Shankar at No 3 has made a catastrophic miscalculation in the auction or they strongly believe that those three bowlers will be enough to get them into the play-offs.

Against Lucknow in their opener it worked as Shami ripped through them. The problem will come when they face up against better units and they are chasing 170 or more.

Possible XI: Gill, Wade, Shankar, Hardik, Miller, Tewatia, Manohar, Rashid, Shami, Fegruson, Varun

Punjab power

Delhi Capitals inflicted a surprise defeat on Mumbai Indians in their opener with only two overseas players. They should have Mustafizur Rahman and Lungi Ngidi available.

Only one is likely to play, however, and Ngidi may get the nod with Khaleel Ahmed able to replicate The Fizz’s left-arm benders.

The dual availability gives them the option to take out Kamlesh Nagarkoti, who was too expensive against Mumbai. There is no David Warner, Mitchell Marsh or Anrich Nortje.

Against the Indians they showed tremendous fight to chase 178 from 72 for five. Lalit Yadav earned himself a run in the side with the crucial knock.

Possible XI: Shaw, Seifert, Mandeep, Pant, Lalit, Rovman, Shardul, Axar, Kuldeep, Khaleel, Ngidi

Pitch report

The Pune pitch has been decent for batting in recent matches. More than 160 in first-innings has been busted in five of the last eight. In that sequence there were three scores of 200 or more. Backing both teams for 160 or more has been a winner four times.

A gamble on both hitting 170 or 180 is an option but it is tempered by the strengths and weaknesses of the teams. Sportsbook go 11/10 and 11/4 the latter. Delhi will face a tough task against that line-up. Gujarat’s batting, as we said, is weak.

Fear Gujarat with the blade

Delhi Capitals are priced at 1.758/11 in an early show and it is hard not to reckon that the odds are about right. We really don’t want to lay ourselves open to relying on that Gujarat batting line-up.

If the Delhi odds are too short for you, then the best advice is to hope they bat first. There could be some movement in the Titans price if they get among that top order quickly. Bet the match odds here

Tops value

Ngidi is 10/3 to be top Delhi wicket-taker. He is an out-and-out wicket-taaker and he should be shorter considering his strike rate of 12 in the last two years. No-one can match it.

Ngidi has a great chance to nail his place for the rest of the tournament with Nortje struggling with injury. That means the 12/1 about him finishing as top DC wicket-taker over the tournament is generous. Bet the Sportsbook odds here

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