IPL 2020: Can a hurt KKR cope with a dominant MI?
Though the two teams boast enough talent on each side, they have had contrasting fates in the IPL. While Mumbai are comfortably placed at number 2 and are front-runners in the qualification race, Kolkata Knight Riders are hanging on to their position in the top 4 by a thread.
KKR had a promising line-up yet again, the inclusion of Eoin Morgan and Pat Cummins in their ranks gave a sense of stability and promise. After seven games, the management would not be as assured as they were at the start of the season. Although they have 4 wins in the 7 games, their star batsman in Andre Russell has not turned up with the bat, Dinesh Karthik has failed to reprise his finishing prowess and Pat Cummins has not been in amongst the wickets. And if those weren’t problems enough, Sunil Narine, the veteran spinner, was reported for suspect action after a game he won for them, and had to be dropped from the time being.
Mumbai have dominated after their loss in the season opener, winning 5 of the next games, even defeating the table toppers Delhi Capitals. Their only loss came in a super over. Their pacers have extracted help from the most stubborn of the surfaces, their spinners have been going about their business smartly and the batters have risen to the occasion whenever needed.
Rohit Sharma, Quinton de Kock, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan and Keiron Pollard, all have at least one fifty under their belt, with the former three having two. The Pandya brothers have played breezy cameos towards the end.
And after all that, Mahela Jayadawardhane, the MI coach has expressed his dissatisfaction at MI’s fielding. Talk about expectations for being a champion side!
“The energy levels are good but I’m not going to be satisfied,” he said. While the other teams are planning changes for the slowing pitches, Jayawardhane has said that all MI need to do is ensure that their presence is more intimidating.
While MI are unlikely to make any changes, KKR might look at Lockie Ferguson instead of Tom Banton. Because top Banton’s inclusion displaced Rahul Tripathi from the opening position, something which affects the team adversely. Also, Chris Green might also be finally looked as a like for like replacement for Narine.
MI: Quinton de Kock (wk), Rohit Sharma (C), Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, James Pattinson, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah
KKR: Shubhman Gill, Rahul Tripathi, Nitish Rana, Eoin Morgan, Dinesh Karthik (C, wk), Andre Russell, Pat Cummins, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Varun Chakravorthy, Lockie Ferguson/Chris Green, Prasidh Krishna/Kuldeep Yadav