IPL 2021: Dale Steyn backs Chennai Super Kings to beat Kolkata Knight Riders in the final

KKR went past Delhi Capitals in the last over of the second Qualifier to set up a mouth-watering final against MS Dhoni’s CSK on Friday.

Chennai Super Kings in a file photo. (Image credit: IPL Twitter)
By Karthik Raman | Oct 14, 2021 | 3 Min Read follow icon Follow Us

Former South African pacer Dale Steyn has backed Chennai Super Kings to win the Indian Premier League 2021 title at the expense of Kolkata Knight Riders in the final on Friday. The speedster believes that KKR’s luck is “going to catch up to them” due to “bad decisions” and the lack of form of some senior players. In the second qualifier, KKR went past one of the consistent performers of this edition – Delhi Capitals – in the final over. At one point, it seemed as though KKR are going to run away with the low-scoring match. However, their batsmen almost played it into the hands of their opponents with a mighty collapse towards the end of the innings. From 123-1, they fell like a pack of cards to go 130-7 within five overs. In the end, a Rahul Tripathi six helped them get over the line and set up a final date against MS Dhoni’s CSK.

“I kind of have always played numbers,” Dale Steyn told ESPNcricinfo. “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.”

Steyn: KKR might come against a better team in the final

On the other hand, the former South African pacer believes that CSK have been the calmer side this season and have stepped up at the right time of the campaign. “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,” he added.

It is to be noted that KKR have a 100 percent win record in the IPL finals. They have clinched the trophy twice in 2012 and 2014. Their first-ever triumph had famously came against Dhoni’s CSK back in 2012. However, the Chennai franchise will be confident of getting the better of the Kolkata side after beating them both times in IPL 2021. Meanwhile, Sanjay Manjrekar, speaking in the same interaction, also backed CSK to win their fourth IPL title.

Manjrekar: I am going with CSK as favorites

“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,” the former Indian batsman said. “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 has also had a piece of advice for Eoin Morgan and KKR coach Brendon McCullum, urging them to be a “little brave” in the final. “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,” he concluded.

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