The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is about to kick start the 12th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) from Saturday.
Defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) will take on Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the first match at MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai, on March 23.
The IPL 2019 will feature eight teams who will play each other in home-and-away ties with the top four point-getters qualifying for the playoffs:
-Chennai Super Kings
-Royal Challengers Bangalore
-Kolkata Knight Riders
-Kings XI Punjab
Military bands will perform at the MA Chidambaram Stadium ahead of the big clash. This will be another act in the series of gestures by the cricketing fraternity in the wake of the Pulwama terror attack. Earlier this month, in the ODI series against Australia, the Indian players had paid homage to our military and the attack victims by sporting Army camouflage caps in the third match in Ranchi.
The BCCI has also confirmed that there would be no opening ceremony for this year’s competition.
Chennai’s 2018 title win on their return to the IPL from a two-year ban saw them draw level with Mumbai Indians as the most successful team in the 11-year history of the tournament with three IPL crowns.
Rajasthan Royals created history after becoming the first team to win the IPL title. This time, the team is going all pink and is aiming to recreate 2008 heroics.
Team Delhi is back with a new name - Delhi Capitals and yet to taste the ultimate victory in the IPL. Delhi's youngsters are all set for the game.
Kings XI Punjab finished as runners-up once in 2014; they are all set this time with a new coach, a new director of cricket and a new approach to the game. "Iss vaari, it will be for our Pind, our Pride, our very own Punjab," the team mentioned in a tweet.
The 2016 champions, Sunrisers Hyderabad, will be playing their seventh edition of the Indian Premier League. In 2018, Sunrisers Hyderabad were beaten by Chennai Super Kings in the IPL finals.
Two-time IPL champions Kolkata Knight Riders have been one of the most consistent teams in the league. Ahead of IPL 2019, SRK released a video from his official Twitter handle urging the team fans to continue their support.
The league is often considered a platform for players to shine. This year too, the league will feature some players who will be making their debut. Varun Chakravarthy, Shivam Dube, Prabhsimran Gill, Prayas Ray Barman are few names to watch out for.
The Rohit Sharma-led Mumbai Indians have the record of playing the most number of matches in IPL history.
The teams are also engaging each other in a social media banter this time.
A total of 17 matches will be played during this two-week period across the eight home venues of the respective franchises. All teams will play a minimum of four matches with DC and RCB playing five matches. Every team will play a minimum of two home and two away matches with DC playing three home matches, while RCB will play three away matches.
Here's a shout out to any NRIs who will be watching the games, Live or at home. Share your IPL posts, pics and memes with us at #NRIsonIPL. Get set for the battle of the greats!