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Champions League T20 Preview: Teams aiming to end status quo

The 2014 Champions League Twenty20 will get under way on Saturday with all eyes again on the Australian and Indian sides.

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No team outside of the two countries has emerged triumphant in the competition since its inception in 2009.

New South Wales Blues, Sydney Sixers, Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians (twice) are the only sides to have lifted the trophy.

There is every chance of seeing a repeat winner, too, with Chennai and Mumbai among a four-strong Indian Premier League contingent.

Of that quartet, it is Kolkata Knight Riders leading the way following their stunning IPL 2014 success.

Manish Pandey was the hero in the final, his 94 helping KKR chase 200 against a Kings XI Punjab side who had finished top of the standings with 11 wins in 14 games.

Both enter this competition with star-studded line-ups, Kolkata boasting the likes of Sunil Narine, Pat Cummins and Yusuf Pathan while Kings XI have Virender Sehwag, David Miller and Glenn Maxwell in their ranks.

A Chennai team featuring MS Dhoni, Suresh Reina and the in-form Faf du Plessis also look strong, as do the Mumbai Indians - even if skipper Rohit Sharma misses out through a broken thumb.

Big Bash League winners Perth Scorchers will be led by Adam Voges, who oversees a strong outfit featuring powerful all-rounder Mitchell Marsh.

The team they beat in the final, Hobart Hurricanes, have several notable threats, too, and will be hoping an experienced unit can mount a challenge.

Caribbean Premier League victors Barbados Tridents are massively undermined by the absence of their skipper Kieron Pollard, who will turn out for and potentially captain Mumbai.

This edition of the tournament will also feature a team from Pakistan for the first time, with a Lahore Lions unit " including Ahmed Shehzad, Umar Akmal, Kamran Akmal and Nasir Jamshed " attempting to spark an upset.

The remainder of the places are taken up by Cape Cobras and Dolphins of South Africa, plus New Zealand's Northern Districts and Sri Lanka's Southern Express.

Ram Slam T20 holders the Dolphins will be without that competition's leading run-scorer Miller, but have their leading bowlers Karl Abbott and Robbie Frylinck available.

The Cobras arguably boast an even stronger line-up, with established international stars Hashim Amla, Vernon Philander, Robin Peterson, Richard Levi and JP Duminy joined by former Proteas players Justin Kemp, Justin Ontong and Charl Langeveldt.

Southern Express will be hoping for big things from their most experiences player Farveez Maharoof, while a Northern Districts squad with Daniel Vettori, Tim Southee, Kane Williamson and Scott Styris at their disposal should feel confident about springing a surprise.

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