Indian Premier League 7: We preview the eight teams competing at this year's tournament
Sky Sports previews the eight teams competing at IPL 7 ahead of this year's tournament.
Last Updated: 16/04/14 11:42am
A lot has changed since then, not least the players and ahead of IPL 7 we have picked out the key names to look out for from the eight teams vying for the main prize.
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Captain: Virat Kohli
Key men: Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers, Yuvraj Singh
Boasting stars from all over the globe, Bangalore looked primed to make a serious assault on this year's title. The men in red and gold were beaten finalists in 2009 and 2011 but with Kohli, arguably the best player in the world at the moment, leading the side, this could be their year. Gayle, who plundered 175 against Pune last year will provide the fireworks for the Vijay Mallya-owned franchise, while Muttiah Muralitharan lines up at the age of 42.
Chennai Super Kings
Captain: MS Dhoni
Key men: Dwayne Bravo, Brendon McCullum, Ravi Jadeja
Last year's runners-up have retained Dhoni as captain despite his offer to step down from the role following their IPL 6 final defeat to Mumbai. The absence of Mike Hussey this campaign is a blow, but one which has been softened by the signings of McCullum, Samuel Badree and Dwayne Smith. Bravo topped the wicket chart last time out and joins a potent attack alongside spin twins Ravi Ashwin and Jadeja.
Kolkata Knight Riders
Captain: Gautam Gambhir
Key men: Sunil Narine, Jacques Kallis, Shakib Al-Hasan
After relinquishing their title last year, Kolkata have rung the changes for IPL 7. Coach Trevor Bayliss has retained just two players from last term - captain Gambhir and mystery spinner Narine - and brought in the all-round talents of Jacques Kallis, Shakib Al-Hasan and power-hitter Yusuf Pathan. Bowling looks well-balanced, although batting looks much weaker than their rivals.
Kings XI Punjab
Captain: George Bailey
Key men: Mitchell Johnson, Glenn Maxwell, Virender Sehwag
There is an Australian flavour to the Kings XI squad as Bailey replaces Sehwag as captain. Bailey is one of four Aussies on the Kings XI roster and will be buoyed by the news that Aussie quick Johnson, the third leading wicket-taker last year, is fit for duty. Look a strong all-round unit with power hitters Thisara Perera and Maxwell aiming to impress.
Captain: Kevin Pietersen
Key men: Dinesh Karthik, Ross Taylor, JP Duminy
IPL 7 marks the start of a new chapter for captain KP, who begins life after England. The swashbuckling right-hander will captain the team and play for the entire duration of the tournament for the first time as Delhi look to break their title duck. Runs should be aplenty with Pietersen, Taylor, Karthik and Quinton de Kock in the line-up, but bowling depth looks a concern.
Captain: Shane Watson
Key men: Brad Hodge, James Faulkner, Amit Mishra
Royals fans will be hoping captain Watson can emulate another Australian tactician by leading the side to their first IPL title since the inaugural year in 2008. Watson has some familiar faces around him with fellow Aussies Steve Smith, James Faulkner and Hodge also on the RR roster, however the lack of a world class spinner could prove costly.
Captain: Rohit Sharma
Key men: Lasith Malinga, Kieron Pollard, Mike Hussey
Defending champions Mumbai have retained Rohit as captain after leading the side to title glory in 2013. The leading run-scorer in IPL 6, Mike Hussey, has joined the Indians and will shoulder most of the run-scoring responsibilities alongside his captain. All-rounder Pollard looks to have overcome a lengthy knee injury in time to play, while T20 world champion Malinga remains the best death bowler in the business.
Captain: Shikhar Dhawan
Key men: David Warner, Aaron Finch, Dale Steyn
Not short of batting options, the Sunrisers have three of the most sought-after openers in white-ball cricket at their disposal in Dhawan, captaining the side for the first time, and destructive Australian duo Warner and Finch. Backed up by the pace of Steyn, spin of Amit Mishra and finishing prowess of Darren Sammy, Hyderabad could be a surprise package this year.