England star set for maiden IPL appearance after 5 years, Pooran at No.3: LSG's likely XI vs DC in IPL 2023
Lucknow Super Giants will play against Delhi Capitals at home in their IPL 2023 opener. Here's their likely XI.
Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) will begin their IPL 2023 campaign with a night match against the Delhi Capitals in Lucknow on Saturday, April 1 at the Bharat Ratna Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ekana Cricket Stadium. The KL Rahul led side managed to rope in a few match winners and will be hoping that they can create the sort of impact that propels them to glory in the upcoming season.
Looking back at their performance in their debut season, LSG relished a decent campaign as they concluded the league phase as third on the points table. However, their campaign came to a screeching halt after a loss against the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Eliminator. Ahead of the 2023 auction, Lucknow released Jason Holder, Manish Pandey, Dushmantha Chameera, Evin Lewis, Shahbaz Nadeem, Andrew Tye, and Ankit Rajpoot.
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At the auction LSG bought West Indian wicket-keeper batsman Nicholas Pooran for a whopping INR 16 crore, making him the most expensive Caribbean ever to play in the league. They also successfully acquired the services of Aussie quick Daniel Sams for INR 75 lakh, experienced domestic bowler Jaydev Unadkat for INR 50 lakh, Windies all-rounder Romario Shepherd for INR 50 lakh, and youngster Yash Thakur for INR 45 lakh.
LSG has a balanced bowling attack with Avesh Khan, Mohsin Khan, Englishman Mark Wood and Ravi Bishnoi already in the squad to support the incoming Unadkat, Sams, Amit Mishra, and the young Afghan quick Naveen-ul-Haq. But, they would be hoping that their bowling unit performs better as compared to last season, when they had a tendency to leak runs in crunch games.
They are set to start without Mohsin Khan, the impressive left-arm seamer who finished as the second-most economical bowler of the 2022 IPL, after Sunil Narine of the Kolkata Knight Riders. He has not played competitive cricket since a shoulder surgery last year, though he has joined the Lucknow camp.
The in-form Quinton de Kock will also be unavailable for the opener against Delhi Capitals as he is on national duty with South Africa.
The LSG management will be hoping that with the likes of Pooran, Marcus Stoinis, Deepak Hooda, Krunal Pandya and Ayush Badoni to support the openers, their middle order will step up and be counted this season.
In IPL 2022, Rahul and de Kock did the bulk of the run scoring, with both scoring more than 500 runs. Deepak Hooda was the only other consistent performer amongst the batters with more than 400 runs.
LSG would also be hoping for an improved showing from Ravi Bishnoi, after an underwhelming season last year.
LSG predicted XI vs DC
Openers: KL Rahul (c), Kyle Mayers.
Middle Order: Nicholas Pooran (wk), Ayush Badoni.
All-Rounders: Deepak Hooda, Krunal Pandya, Marcus Stoinis.
Bowlers: Mark Wood, Avesh Khan, Jaydev Unadkat, Ravi Bishnoi.