IPL 2020, Mumbai Indians vs Rajasthan Royals: Preview and Likely 11s
With a stable 11 and all their combinations clicking, the defending champions have already shown that they are not the team they were when IPL visited the UAE in 2014. Mumbai Indians (MI) are one of the two settled sides in the season (alongside Delhi Capitals). Three of their top four have 50+ scores, their finishers in Hardik and Pollard have done exceptionally well, Krunal showed his prowess in the last game, and the pace trio of Boult, Pattinson and Bumrah have turned out to be the most lethal bowling attack.
The story however, isn't the same for Rajasthan Royals. They started the season with two wins on the trot with Steven Smith and Sanju Samosn doing exceptionally well. They found an unlikely batting hero in Rahul Tewatia. Since then, they have lost two games, by 37 runs and 8 wickets respectively. Those are big margins in this format of the game.
Jos Buttler hasn't been able to find form, Samson and Smith haven't fired out of Sharjah and this has exposed their relatively weak middle order. Both their wins came in Sharjah, where bowling was barely a formality, the only challenge was to out-bat the opposition. RR's bowling line-up is still to prove their mettle.
Much is anticipated when the two teams face each other in today's game. While MI are in better form, RR have managed to come out on top against MI every time since their return to the fray in 2018.
Mumbai are unlikely to make any changes to their 11, unless there is an injury concern. The Rajasthan Royals however, might want to replace Robin Uthappa with Yashasvi Jaiswal. Whether or not they make this replacement, Steven Smith needs to demote himself to number 4, giving either of Jaiswal or Uthappa an innings at the top as the Rajasthan based franchisee desperately needs to strengthen the middle-order.
MI: Rohit Sharma (c), Quinton de Kock (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, James Pattinson, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah
RR: Jos Buttler (wk), Yashasvi Jaiswal/Robin Uthappa, Sanju Samson, Steve Smith (c), Riyan Parag, Mahipal Lomror, Tom Curran, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat