Deccan Chargers favourites against Somerset

Reigning IPL champions Deccan Chargers have the balance tilted so heavily in their favour that only complacency can derail them on Saturday.

updated: October 10, 2009 18:00 IST
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Reigning IPL champions Deccan Chargers have the balance tilted so heavily in their favour that only complacency can derail them in Saturday's banana skin encounter against Somerset.

Under the inspirational Adam Gilchrist, the Chargers, at least on paper, possess an arsenal of explosive batsmen and fiery bowlers who helped the franchisee script an incredible turnaround and become the reigning Indian Premier League winner in South Africa.

Gilchrist may have quit international cricket but the swashbuckling left-hander still can tear apart any bowling attack, as he did frequently in the second IPL in South Africa.

The tournament will also be special for controversial all-rounder Andrew Symonds, who would like to make a statement after Australia dumped him on disciplinary grounds.

For them, Rohit Sharma will be hoping to replicate the same form that made him such a hot property in Twenty20 cricket and the youngster is also trying to force his way into Team India with some brilliant knocks in the Champions League.

Having VVS Laxman and Scott Styris will also lend solidity to the side and the presence of RP Singh, Chaminda Vaas and Pragyan Ojha in the bowling unit would mean the Chargers would not have to worry much when it comes to defending totals.

In such a situation, expectation would be sky-high but Gilchrist said they are not allowing it to bog down the team.

"We don't carry any extra burden," Gilchrist said, adding that there is a "Deccan Chargers culture" in the team and all of them are determined to do well.

Laxman, who shone for Lancashire in county cricket, hoped to continue his good form in the Champions League also.

Somerset, on the other hand, would rely heavily on captain Justin Langer and Marcus Trescothick to make their mark in the high-profile event.

Maintaining that playing in the Champions League is a "great opportunity" for the team, Langer has said his teammates would have to get their act right to script an upset.

"There is no dearth of talent in the team and we have to do well in the big moments," he said.

Deccan Chargers: Adam Gilchrist (Captain), VVL Laxman, Venugopal Rao, Andrew Symonds, Scott Styris, Shoaib Ahmed, Rohit Sharma, Harmeet Singh, Chaminda Vaas, T Suman, RP Singh, Fidel Edwards, Ryan Harris, Pragyan Ojha and Azhar Bilakhia.

Somerset: Justin Langer (Captain), Omari Banks, Max Waller, Peter Trego, Arul Suppiah, Zander de Bruyn, Wes Durston, Craig Kieswetter, Charl Willoughby, Marcus Trescothick, Alfonso Thomas, Ben Philips, PS Jones, Jos Buttler, James Hildreth.