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Indian Premier League: Which England players feature, what to expect, and who might win?

Watch the 2024 Indian Premier League from Friday as Chennai Super Kings begin their title defence against Royal Challengers Bangalore from 2.20pm live on Sky Sports Cricket and Main Event

Chennai Super Kings will be defending their IPL title in 2024
Image: Chennai Super Kings will be defending their IPL title in 2024

Sky Sports' Matt Kabir Floyd gives a team-by-team preview of the 2024 Indian Premier League, which starts on Friday live on Sky Sports, along with his starting XI, the names to look out for and who he thinks will win the title this year...

There is a strong argument that the 2023 IPL was the best season ever.

It was by far the highest-scoring year, with a staggering 37 totals of over 200, more than doubling the previous high.

We were also treated to a final for the ages which saw Chennai Super Kings equal Mumbai Indians' record of five trophies.

The beauty of the IPL is that there is always something new to look forward to. Last year was great but there were some big players missing. Welcome back Jasprit Bumrah, Rishabh Pant, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Jonny Bairstow, we've missed you.

So who should we be keeping our eyes on and how do the squads stack up? This is how I see it…

Chennai Super Kings

England's Moeen Ali will feature for the Chennai Super Kings
Image: England's Moeen Ali will feature for the Chennai Super Kings


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2023 - Champions

CSK and Mumbai Indians have both lifted the trophy five times but the former side have been to a staggering 10 finals in 14 seasons, compared to the Indians' six finals in 16.

Inside scoop

Many thought last season's last-ball win in the final would provide MS Dhoni with the perfect opportunity to retire and sail off into the sunset - but he's back, albeit not as skipper having handed over the captaincy to Ruturaj Gaikwad on the eve of the tournament.

Daryl Mitchell and Rachin Ravindra impressed at the World Cup in India and add to the Kiwi presence at the Chepauk stadium. Shardul Thakur has been brought back and as usual the squad is packed with spin options and seam bowlers.

Devon Conway's absence is a blow and like last year there is no quality leg-spinner in the squad. These would normally be big concerns but CSK are the masters at playing to their own strengths.

English involvement

Ben Stokes' absence means Moeen Ali is the sole Englishman in Chennai.

You can see why coach Stephen Fleming likes Mo - his calmness and experience fit perfectly with the CSK way of doing things.

I expect him to get a fair amount of game time although maybe not as much as in previous years. He had a poor season with the bat last year but his bowling gives him a vital second string to his bow - he could well play as the 4th overseas player ahead of Mustafizur Rahman or Matheesha Pathirana on turning pitches.

Matt's XI

Ruturaj Gaikwad (c), Rachin Ravindra, Ajinkya Rahane, Daryl Mitchell, Shivam Dube, MS Dhoni (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar, Maheesh Theekshana, Mustafizur Rahman.

Prediction: Runners-up

Chennai will up near the top of the table again. They may not always have the strongest side on paper but they thrive when the pressure is really on. If this is Dhoni's last season, another shot at the trophy would be a fitting send-off.

Delhi Capitals

Delhi Capitals during the 2023 edition of the IPL
Image: Delhi Capitals during the 2023 edition of the IPL


2023 - 9th

Two group exits in a row after finishing in the top three thrice. They are yet to lift the trophy and have only ever been to the final once, in 2020.

Inside scoop

After getting off to a terrible start last year and losing their first five games, all eyes will be on how the Capitals get out of the blocks this year.

They play their first two home games in Visakhapatnam - as the Arun Jaitley is still being prepared having hosted the WPL - and will need to adapt to their new surroundings quickly.

The massive news is they have a returning talisman in Rishabh Pant, who will play his first competitive cricket since his horrific car accident in December 2022. He will keep and captain but it will be a big ask for him to slip immediately back into being the old Pant.

The frontline bowling attack looks strong with the likes of Anrich Nortje, Kuldeep Yadav and Axar Patel still there, but there are concerns over the fast bowling stocks. Lungi Ngidi has been ruled out of the tournament, Jhye Richardson looks like he will miss at least the start and Nortje has only just returned after a long injury lay-off.

English involvement?

Not unless there is a late replacement brought in.

Matt's XI

David Warner, Prithvi Shaw, Mitchell Marsh, Rishabh Pant (c) (wk), Shai Hope, Ricky Bhui, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Anrich Nortje, Khaleel Ahmed, Mukesh Kumar

Prediction: Group exit

Capitals are likely to be dependent on players returning from injury such as Pant and Nortje which isn't ideal.

Power hitting at the death could also be a weak link. If Pant catches fire right from the off though, it could inspire the whole team.

Gujarat Titans

Gujarat Titans lost to Chennai Super Kings in the 2023 IPL final
Image: Gujarat Titans lost to Chennai Super Kings in the 2023 IPL final


2023 - Runners-up

The Titans look anything but IPL new boys after two stunning first seasons in which they lifted the trophy then were within a whisker away of making it two titles in a row.

Inside scoop

Gujarat seemed to be well on their way to creating an IPL dynasty similar to Chennai or Mumbai so it was a bit of a surprise when skipper Hardik Pandya announced he was jumping ship and returning to Mumbai.

His leadership and form has been key to establishing Gujarat as a force and puts quite a bit of pressure on his replacement Shubman Gill to keep things moving in the right direction.

Gill was in sensational form last year - scoring the second most runs ever in a season - and the Titans will desperately hope that the captaincy doesn't affect his form.

He seems to be quite a different character to the vibrant, pumped up Hardik so it will be interesting to see what kind of leader he is.

Hardik's absence will be felt and so will Mohammed Shami's - ankle surgery has ruled out last season's purple cap winner. The signing of Spencer Johnson, though, is intriguing. The left arm seamer has all the tools to be T20 gun - pace, steepling bounce and swing - and is definitely one to keep a close eye on.

English involvement?

No, just an Irishman. Josh Little held his own in a top side last year and played over half of the games. This year he may find his opportunities limited by the arrival of Johnson.

Matt's XI

Shubman Gill (c), Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Kane Williamson, Sai Sudharsan, David Miller, Vijay Shankar, Rahul Tewatia, Rashid Khan, Mohit Sharma, Spencer Johnson, Sai Kishore

Prediction: Play-offs

Losing Hardik is a crushing blow and Gujarat are significantly weaker without him. However, this is still a very good side and it would be a surprise if they weren't in the mix come the end of the season.

Kolkata Knight Riders

Kolkata Knight Riders finished the 2023 IPL season in seventh place
Image: Kolkata Knight Riders finished the 2023 IPL season in seventh place


2023 - 7th

Four group exits in the last five seasons. The trophies of 2012 and 2014 seem like a distant memory.

Inside scoop

KKR's response to another underwhelming season was to break the bank on Mitchell Starc. Strangely, Starc hasn't played in the IPL since his two-year stint with Royal Challengers Bengaluru ended in 2015.

After a brilliant home World Cup Shreyas Iyer seemed to have the world at his feet but has since lost his place in India's T20 and Test teams along with his central contract.

There may well be something going on behind the scenes that has lead to his fall from grace, either way he has a point to prove at this IPL.

Starc is the dominant seamer they were missing last season, the spin options are even stronger with the addition of Mujeeb Ur Rahman and they are not short on Indian batters.

English involvement?

It's a shame that Gus Atkinson has been withdrawn from the competition to manage his workload but he may not have featured that much with Starc certain to play every game if fit.

Jason Roy pulled out for personal reasons with Phil Salt replacing him. The Knight Riders need one overseas batter to open and it will probably be between Salt and Gurbaz.

Matt's XI

Phil Salt (wk), Venkatesh Iyer, Shreyas Iyer (c), Nitish Rana, Rinku Singh, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Mitchell Starc, Harshit Rana, Suyash Sharma, Varun Chakravarthy

Prediction: Group exit

If everyone in this team plays to their potential then KKR have a great shot at making the play offs. The problem is, they haven't for some time and you have to ask whether the likes of Russell and Narine are now well past their best. Starc will make a difference, the question is - will it be enough?

Lucknow Super Giants


2023 - 3rd

Like the Titans, the Super Giants have taken to the IPL like a duck to water. Their first two seasons have been identical with a third-placed finish followed by a fall at the eliminator.

Inside Scoop

Justin Langer is Lucknow's new head coach. He has some decent tools to work with, particularly the all-rounders. A big decision will be where to bat captain KL Rahul.

Kyle Mayers and Quinton de Kock have the potential to be the most destructive opening pair in the tournament and Rahul is an extremely adaptable player. One big issue might be the lack of cutting edge with the ball. Mark Wood's withdrawal means there is not much genuine pace in the squad and no big-name overseas bowler.

English involvement?

Wood withdrew for work load reasons and David Willey will miss the start of the IPL after having a very busy winter on the road.

When Willey returns he may find it hard to get into the XI with players having established themselves but at the moment LSG are definitely light on experienced overseas bowlers which will work in his favour.

Matt's XI

Kyle Mayers, Quinton de Kock (wk), Devdutt Padikkal, KL Rahul (c), Nicholas Pooran, Deepak Hooda, Krunal Pandya, Naveen Ul-Haq, Yash Thakur, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohsin Khan

Prediction: Group exit

I fear Lucknow may go out at the Group stage for the first time this season on account of a bowling attack that looks underpowered. They have some spectacular players, but they are all batters.

Mumbai Indians

India's captain Rohit Sharma will feature for the Mumbai Indians
Image: India's captain Rohit Sharma will feature for the Mumbai Indians


2023 - 4th

Lifted the trophy five times in eight years and up to 2020 and were the dominant force. Two poor seasons brought the juggernaut back down to earth but they almost returned to the top of the table last year.

Inside scoop

So the prodigal son Hardik Pandya returns as captain to the franchise as a captain he had so much success at. Perhaps the surprise is that he returns as captain and Rohit will be back amongst the rank and file.

Hardik is on course to be India's next T20 captain and the hope is that Rohit's IPL form will return without the weight of the captaincy on him.

There is some cause for concern with the bowling - Jason Behrendorff is out of the tournament with a broken leg and Gerald Coetzee and Dilshan Madushanka will probably miss the early stages. This means they are short on seam bowlers and the spin stocks look thin as well, where the form of Piyush Chawla will be vital.

English involvement?

Luke Wood gets his first taste of the IPL as a replacement for Behrendorff and he has a good chance of going straight into the starting XI. If all the batters are fit (there is a doubt over Suryakumar) then Mumbai will only pick one overseas player in the top six so have room for three overseas all rounders or bowlers. With Coetzee and Madushanka likely to be out for the first couple of games at least, Wood could be the one they turn to.

Matt's XI

Rohit Sharma, Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Tilak Varma, Hardik Pandya (c), Tim David, Mohammed Nabi, Piyush Chawla, Jasprit Bumrah, Akash Madhwal, Luke Wood

Prediction: Champions

Mumbai got to the play-offs last year with a terrifying batting line-up and one of the weakest bowling attacks on paper. Add Hardik and Bumrah to the mix and I can see this group rolling back the years to the glory days. Could it be a Mumbai v Chennai final yet again?

Punjab Kings

England's Sam Curran will feature for the Punjab Kings
Image: England's Sam Curran will feature for the Punjab Kings


2023 - 8th

Being a Kings fan ain't easy. In 16 seasons they have got to the play offs just twice, the last of which was way back in 2014.

Inside scoop

Punjab showed promise at times last year and got in a good position to make the play offs until four losses in their last five derailed the campaign.

Keeping the runs down was their major issue and they've attempted to fix this by adding the impressive death bowling of Harshal Patel and Chris Woakes' prowess with the new ball.

In terms of the batting, Jonny Bairstow is back after missing the entirety of last season and Rilee Rossouw could prove to be a canny buy.

English involvement?

Plenty - the Kings have no less than four English players, almost one third of the total number at the IPL. Bairstow and Liam Livingstone should be shoe ins for the starting eleven.

Sam Curran should get a lot of game time too but I feel his place may be vulnerable after a less than average debut season and the fact that Kings already have a very good left arm seamer in Arshdeep Singh. Woakes will probably start as back up, he may have to edge out Curran for a place in the team.

Matt's XI

Shikar Dhawan (c), Prabhsimran Singh, Rilee Rossouw, Jonny Bairstow, Liam Livingstone, Jitesh Sharma, Harshal Patel, Kagiso Rabada, Harpreet Brar, Rahul Chahar, Arshdeep Singh

Prediction: Group exit

The Kings have quite a few box office players and I was very tempted to predict a run to the play offs.

If Rabada finds peak form and the batting is as explosive as it can be, they can beat anyone. I'm just not convinced they have the consistency or confidence to do that regularly.

Rajasthan Royals

Jos Buttler, Rajasthan Royals (Associated Press)
Image: England's white ball captain Jos Buttler will feature for the Rajasthan Royals


2023 - 5th

The inaugural champions had been off the pace for a long time but revived in 2022 and made it all the way to the final. Last year they started brilliantly with four wins from five but fell away badly and just missed out on the play offs.

Inside scoop

I expected a lot more from Rajasthan last year and the way they lost form in the second half of the season was worrying. Letting go of Devdutt Padikkal means they now don't have an obvious number three and with no Jason Holder they are short on all rounders.

Jos Buttler and Yashasvi Jaiswal are an opening pair to die for. The bowling attack is incredibly strong and there is the potential to have a three pronged spin attack of R Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahl and Adam Zampa.

English involvement?

Buttler's form mimicked that of the team last year - he set off like a train then tailed off significantly. He will play every game though and is arguably the most important cog in the whole eleven.

Tom Kohler-Cadmore has been brought in and may feature as Padikkal's departure means there is a free spot in the middle order.

Buttler, Shimron Hetmeyer and Trent Boult are certainties to play so he would be competing with the likes of Rovman Powell, Adam Zampa and Nandre Burger for the last overseas slot.

Matt's XI

Jos Buttler, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Dhruv Jurel, Sanju Samson (c) (wk), Shimron Hetmeyer, Rovman Powell, Riyan Parag, Ravichandran Ashwin, Trent Boult, Avesh Khan, Yuzvendra Chahal

Prediction: Play Offs

The lack of a number three and question marks over the fourth overseas spot are significant problems that need to be sorted. Even so, I think that the Royals' top order and quality bowing attack will carry them to a top-four finish, just.

Royal Challengers Bengaluru


2023 - 6th

RCB are the IPL's 'nearly men'. Despite having seen various superstars walk through the doors over the years they are still waiting for that first trophy.

Inside scoop

The franchise will be hoping that changing the team name from 'Bangalore' to the older version 'Bengaluru' will bring a change in fortune.

Virat Kohli sounds raring to go on his return to competitive cricket after missing the England Tests for personal reasons.

Harshal Patel's departure means they will have to replace his overs at the death and Karn Sharma may not be capable of carrying the spin attack.

English involvement?

After Punjab, RCB are the 'most English' IPL side with Mo Bobat the new Director of Cricket and Will Jacks, Reece Topley and Tom Curran in the squad.

Topley appears the most likely to play - he's competing with Lockie Ferguson and Alzarri Joseph but could get the nod for his death bowling and being a left-armer.

Curran also has a good chance as he is the closest replacement for Harshal. I'd love to see Jacks get a few games to show his immense talent but it will be hard to break in with Du Plessis, Maxwell and Green nailed on to start.

Matt's XI

Faf du Plessis (c), Cameron Green, Virat Kohli, Rajat Patidar, Glenn Maxwell, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Mahipal Lomror, Karn Sharma, Akash Deep, Reece Topley, Mohammad Siraj

Prediction: Group exit

RCB are capable of outgunning their opponents with sheer weight of runs, as are Mumbai. The difference between the two might be Bumrah and the Indians' slightly better spin attack. In fact lack of quality spin could be RCB's downfall - as the pitches wear and spin more, do they have the spinners to win matches?

Sunrisers Hyderabad


2023 - Bottom

Haven't finished higher than 8th in the last three seasons. Their golden era was in 2016-20 when the side reached the play offs for five years in a row and lifted the trophy in 2016.

Inside scoop

Once again the Sunrisers have decided to twist rather than stick as they attempt to get back to being a side that challenges for the title.

Pat Cummins and Dan Vettori replace Aiden Markram and Brian Lara as captain and coach respectively.

The batting must improve if they are to compete this year, and the fact that Heinrich Klaasen has taken his game to the next level since last season bodes well.

How the side is balanced will be crucial as Sunrisers have plenty of good overseas options. This may mean playing three overseas batters and leaving out the likes of Marco Jansen and Wanindu Hasaranga.

English involvement?

None initially.

Matt's XI

Mayank Agarwal, Travis Head, Rahul Tripathi, Aiden Markram, Heinrich Klaasen (wk), Washington Sundar, Pat Cummins (c), Shahbaz Ahmed, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jaydev Unadkat, Mayank Markande

Prediction: Group exit

The bowling depth looks strong but the Sunrisers might just be lacking a world class batter. If the batters can find a way to score enough runs, they be will be a force to reckoned with.

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