The new cycle of IPL is here and the excitement is palpable. It is without the slightest doubt the T20 league looked forward to by the cricketing world not just for the kind of fees that players get but also for the quality of cricket. The crowds make it even more dramatic and the razzmatazz makes it unmatchable by any other league in the world. The fact that many who scoff at it are happy to come and work on it is an indication of how irresistible IPL is.
The first edition of the league took off in spectacular fashion with Brendon McCullum playing a scorching innings hitting 15 sixes on his way to 158 thrilling runs. This edition will also be hoping for a similar start and with two heavyweights beginning the tournament and at the iconic Wankhede stadium there should be plenty of fireworks on display.
All eyes will be on the two teams who return to the fold. Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals are back and have some incredible players in their ranks. Chennai Super Kings have been the powerhouse of the tournament with the charismatic MS Dhoni as their skipper.
Whether he will be able to win his third IPL will depend a great deal on his bowling unit which now has the experienced and canny Harbhajan Singh among its ranks.
There is also Ravindra Jadeja who will be keen to show that he should be in the India limited overs teams. As always the key will be Dhoni himself and the news that he will bat higher up the order means that he gets more overs to cause mayhem and excite the crowds.
Mumbai Indians, the defending champions, are not going to give up their crown easily. Last year Rohit Sharma their captain batted down the order but it’s as an opening batsman that he has scored those big scores as he gets more overs to bat. The captaincy made a huge difference to him as he realised how much his runs matter to his team.