Updated: May 7, 2019 2:47:43 pm
Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Mumbai Indians (MI) have been the two best teams of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019. After going down by six wickets in their last league fixture against KXIP, defending champions Chennai Super Kings on Tuesday would look to bounce back with a win against Mumbai Indians in Qualifier 1 and make a direct entry to the finals.
However, it won’t be a walk in the park for MS Dhoni’s men as Mumbai Indians are on a good run of form with three wins out of the last four league games. In their last encounter, MI beat Kolkata Knight Riders and sent them crashing out of the tournament and will be brimming with confidence.
Mumbai and Chennai have already bagged three IPL titles and there is hardly anything to differentiate in the quality both the sides possess. However, Mumbai are the only team who have dominated Super Kings at their home ground.
While playing the qualifier at home does give Chennai an extra edge over their opponents (with six wins out of the last seven home games), Mumbai hold the distinction of being the only team who have dominated the yellow brigade at their own den. In it terms of overall head to head at the venue in the IPL, Mumbai lead 4-2.
After a strong start in the tournament, CSK were patchy towards the latter stages of the tournament. Despite being the first side to make it to the playoffs, there is a glaring shortcoming in the CSK line-up and that is the poor display by the opening pair of Shane Watson and Faf du Plessis.
The pair have so far only managed to post a partnership of 50 or more only once in 14 matches. However, the South African skipper returning to form after playing a 96-run knock in just 55 balls may bring some relief to the franchise.
But it is MS Dhoni who has consistently churned out runs this season and is CSK’s man-in-form. Batting at a strike rate of 139.92, the CSK skipper has amassed 368 runs in nine innings so far. However, the CSK batting line-up will be up against the blazing bowling attack of Mumbai, which includes Jasprit Bumrah, Lasith Malinga, Rahul Chahar, and the Pandya brothers.
CSK, however, suffered a huge blow before the play-off and will miss the services of the Kedar Jadhav, who sustained a freak shoulder injury in the match against Kings XI. The bowling unit has been CSK’s strong point so far this season and becomes even more potent on M A Chidambaram stadium’s sluggish wicket.
Mumbai’s batting unit will be spearheaded by Rohit Sharma and Quinton De Kock and much will be expected from all-rounders Hardik Pandya and Kieron Pollard.
Going by the head-to-head record this year, MI holds the upper hand having won both its encounters against CSK in the preliminary phase. In overall record too, the visitors hold the upper hand as out of the 28 encounters Mumbai has won 16 and Chennai had to be content with 12.
Pitch Report: The track in Chepauk has assisted spinners and the team batting second. The games haven’t been overly high-scoring, but runs have flowed at a decent rate.
Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (C), Quinton de Kock, Suryakumar Yadav, Yuvraj Singh, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Mitchell McClenaghan, Mayank Markande, Rahul Chahar, Jasprit Bumrah, Anmolpreet Singh, Siddhesh Lad, Ankul Roy, Evin Lewis, Pankaj Jaiswal, Ben Cutting, Ishan Kishan, Aditya Tare, Rasikh Salam, Barinder Sran, Jayant Yadav, Beuran Hendricks and Lasith Malinga.
Chennai Super Kings: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (C), Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Shane Watson, Faf du Plessis, Murali Vijay, Ravindra Jadeja, Dhruv Shorey, Chaitanya Bishnoi, Rituraj Gaikwad, Dwayne Bravo, Karn Sharma, Imran Tahir, Harbhajan Singh, Mitchell Santner, Shardul Thakur, Mohit Sharma, K M Asif, Deepak Chahar, N Jagadeesan, Scott Kuggeleijn.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.