After ending their eleven-match losing streak,Pune Warriors will have their tails up when they lock horns with Mumbai Indians. It hasn’t been a good start for Pune,but the win against the Rajasthan Royals would have done a world of good to their confidence.
Pune will have to be on top of their game as Mumbai,coming fresh from a massive win over the Delhi Daredevils,are in ominous touch. They have the best middle-order in the tournament with some big-hitters there. All of them — Rohit Sharma,Dinesh Karthik,Kieron Pollard — have had their share of moments in the middle and will look to sustain the good form.
One major concern they are tackling since the first edition is the opening combination. The franchise is yet to find a duo to set the ball rolling at top of the order and provide decent starts consistently. Even the very experienced duo of skipper Ricky Ponting and Sachin Tendulkar have failed and going forward,the team needs to address this issue.
Pune,on the other hand,have solved their opening woes. The struggling franchise got off to a blistering start against Rajasthan. Aaron Finch injected a fresh lease of life in the ordinary looking batting unit and helped his team go past fifty in the fourth over of the innings- their best start so far.
Robin Uthappa,too,found the middle of his bat and scored at a healthy strike-rate. His little walk towards the bowler,punches towards the off-side and the big hits over long-on were back. With the opening sorted for a while,the middle-order will have to raise their game and come good in the tournament.
The bowlers have enjoyed most of the success in this batsmen-friendly tournament so far. Even for both Pune and Mumbai,the bowling unit has a lot of variety. Mumbai are led by the toe-crusher Lasith Malinga,ably assisted by offie Harbhajan Singh and Aussie quick Mitchell Johnson,whereas the Pune outfit is doing good courtesy their slow bowlers Rahul Sharma and Yuvraj Singh.
Both Rahul and Yuvraj don’t go for too many runs and have this knack of picking the odd wicket. They are not big turners of the ball but use their subtle variations to fox the batsman.
Pune,buoyed after a big win,will come all guns blazing against hosts Mumbai. It will be interesting to see how Ponting and Co. respond to the challenge.
Trending on Twitter
S Sreesanth has had his moment of glory on the social platform,time to focus on the afternoon game.
Ross Taylor after the win against Rajasthan
“It was a good to get our 1st win. Awesome batting by @AaronFinch5 and Robin to set up the match. @punewarriorsipl #IPL6.”
“Thank you guys for all your support… I hope I’ve lived up to all the expectations today! Keep the support coming and I’ll keep up my focus.”