IPL 2020: RCB, MI fight it out for the top spot
Up until a few matches ago, both Mumbai Indians (MI) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) would have been relaxed about the qualification scenarios, but performances of the resurgent Punjab and Hyderabad would have created a little tension. Thus both teams will eye on an immediate win today.
The last time these two teams met, MI lost after a thrilling super-over.
Mumbai are placed at the top, though uncomfortably and a healthy net run-rate would have them reassured of qualification, but they would want to win a minimum two of the remaining three games and secure a top 2 finish. Their biggest worry would be Rohit Sharma’s fitness. The MI skipper has sat on the sidelines for two games and has even not been named in the Australia tour squads. He was however, seen in action during the training session. Both, Keiron Pollard as skipper and Ishan Kishan as an opener have done well in the hitman’s absence.
RCB, albeit having an equal number of wins in the equal number of matches, would be a little more desperate for a win. A difference in NRR of 1.16 would mean that the Virat Kohli led side would want to rule NRR out by winning their remaining encounters and surging ahead on points alone.
MI batting first at Abu Dhabi has been a story of its own. They have managed an average score of 187, as compared to 151 by the other teams. RCB have also won both their games at the venue so far. They would be hoping for the same to continue. Two losses in the last three games would have them concerned, and DC’s lean run would also be at the back of their mind as they wouldn’t want their businesses to fizzle out towards the business end of the tournament.
RCB are likely to make a couple of changes to their squad, owing to their performance in the last game as well as the conditions in Abu Dhabi. Isuru Udana and Shivam Dube are likely to get back into the squad.
Mumbai have seldom tinkered with their squad, playing only 13 players in the tournament so far. Unless Rohit Sharma is fit, they are unlikely to make a change and Saurabh Tiwary would make way otherwise.
MI: Quinton de Kock (wk), Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Saurabh Tiwary, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard (c), Krunal Pandya, James Pattinson, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah
RCB: Devdutt Padikkal, Aaron Finch, Virat Kohli (c), AB de Villiers (wk), Gurkeerat Singh, Chris Morris, Washington Sundar, Isuru Udana, Navdeep Saini, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal