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IPL 2 – Warnie’s Jaipur face Pietersen’s Royal Challengers

The first evening at IPL Season Two will also be about friends turned foes. The camaraderie that Hampshire mates Shane Warne and Kevin Pietersen share goes back a long way, but nothing can quite suppress the fierce competitor that resides in each of them.

The duel between defending champions Team Jaipur and Royal Challengers may well come to be decided by a fierce face-off between the two pals.

While Warne’s Jaipur have a reputation to defend, KP, taking over the reins from Rahul Dravid and available only for the first couple of weeks, will want to make an impression right away.

Royal Challengers, the ultimate under-achievers of the inaugural edition, may well come up with something special this time around.

Team Jaipur, in contrast, showed last season how to maximize potential but Warnes young brigade will be playing in conditions which are pretty much alien to it.

The likes of Swapnil Asnodkar and Ravindra Jadeja have no experience of playing on such bouncy tracks and it would be interesting to see what they come up with against the likes of Dale Steyn running in at full steam.

In a warm-up match here last weekend, the team has already found out how life on the on the Newlands pitch can be.

It will also be interesting to find out how the youngsters carry their new status. This time, they start as front-runners and will have to survive the push from others trying to overtake them.

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