Placed at the bottom of the group Pune Warriors has no option but to try to win all the remaining matches. Tough task!! Ganguly’s inclusion may let them fire or will it backfire!! Mumbai Indians on the other hand are topping the charts after every match in Points Table, batting and Bowling. They have already done it, and now will look for ways to better the last match victory against Warriors.
Mumbai Indians defeated Pune Warriors in a close match at home. Munaf Patel rocked them with his slow fast bowling. They could score only 118 runs. Yuvraj went for duck, Uthappa was the highest scorer. Still the PWI bowlers made a match of it and MI could win only on the last ball of the match.
Head-to-Head: MI 1, PWI 0
- MI def PWI by 7 wkts
Mumbai Indians defeated Delhi Daredevils by 8 wickets, after bundling them below 100. Against Royal Challengers Banglore Mumbai Indians bowler laid the ground for a low chase, and batsmen ensured another emphatic victory by 9 wickets. But, in the home match against fresher Kochi Tuskers, despite scoring high total batting first for the first time, the bowlers failed to defend. But, they bounced back and thumped Pune Warriors India. Against champions CSK, MI humbled them easily with Harbhajan’s spins that recorded one of the IPL’s best bowling performances. In the last match, they thumped Deccan Chargers in away match to celebrate Sachin’s birthday. But Rajasthan Royals humiliated them at Jaipur restricting them to one of the lowest IPL total. Last match saw Indians thumpings Kings XI at home.
Pune Warriors had a good start and lost momentum later with 5 losses on trot now. Both matches they won batting second, but lost third match in high scoring game when they had to defend. In the first match they defeated Kings XI by 7-wickets, while in 2nd match defeated Kochi Tuskers by 4-wickets. But, against Delhi Daredevils at home, their bowlers failed to defend the high total. Mumbai Indians forced them into submission with bowling. In the last match, the batsmen failed to chase a low total against CSK. In the back-to-back match against CSK, they failed to defend almost the same target. Against Royal Challengers Bangalore in the last match, except Yuvi, the bowlers and batsmen succumbed. Again against Rajasthan Royals the batsmen failed to impress, and Warriors lost 6th game on a trot.
Mumbai Indians top order batsmen and bowlers have shown exceptional high in player’s performance index. Sachin has retained the Orange cap, and Malinga’s Purple Cap is guaranted for at least 10 more matches. Rohit has caught Sachin and Rayudu in the 200-club. Symonds has entered 100-club door and was dismissed against Royals after playing 3 unbeatable innings. The bowlers have been exceptional taking 49 wickets in 8 matches, providing the best bowling performances of tournament so far.
Pune Warrior’s player performance index is not so high-profile. Mithun has joined Yuvraj, Ryder and Uthappa in 100-plus club. Their bowlers are performing better earning 39 wickets in 8 matches, but batting is failing to back-up.
Who Will Win Today!
Yuvraj Singh knows excuses do not earn points, but a win does. That is what he would be working for now as a captain. If Ganguly clicks that will be megaboon for the sinking boat of Warriors. While Warriors chances are all about fight and fight, Mumbai Indians have nothing much to worry but they just need to improve the execution of winning skills that they are already practising the best. MI has all the edge, but Warrior has hope and they can make a game of this uneven match between the group toppers and the bottomers.
Malinga/Munaf vs Ryder/Uthappa/Yuvraj
Last match Malinga and Munaf won the battle. This time the experience Warriors trio would be looking to set the record straight. Considering that they cannot go below where they are placed now, Warriors success can be considered.
Tendulkar and Co vs PWI Bowling
In the last match PWI bowlers managed to take only 3 wickets but made the MI batsmen sweat for the low target. Finally MI could win only on the last ball of the match. Warriors bowlers would not be discouraged by that. If they can almost defend the low target, they can be sure of dispatching the MI batsmen easily today. Tendulkar, Rayudu, Rohit and Symonds would look forward to attack them, taking cue from their defensive approach in the last match.
Mumbai Indians Squad
Batsman: Sachin Tendulkar (Captain), Ambati Rayudu, Rajagopal Sathish, Rohit Sharma, Tirumalasetti Suman, Aditya Tare (WK), Davy Jacobs (WK)
Allrounder: James Franklin, Moises Henriques, Kieron Pollard, Andrew Symonds
Bowlers: Aiden Blizzard, Dilhara Fernando, Lasith Malinga, Harbhajan Singh, Munaf Patel, Abu Nechim, Yuzvendra Chahal, Sarul Kanwar, Dhawal Kulkarni, Ali Murtaza, Pawan Suyal, Santosh Yadav, Suryakumar Yadav
Pune Warrior Squad
Batsman: Yuvraj Singh (Captain), Mitchell Marsh, Callum Ferguson, Tim Paine (WK), Graeme Smith, Manish Pandey, Eklavya Dwivedi, Abhishek Jhunjhunwala, Harshad Khadiwale, Mohnish Mishra, Robin Uthappa (WK)
Allrounder: Nathan McCullum, Angelo Mathews, Jesse Ryder, Mithun Manhas
Bowlers: Wayne Parnell, Jerome Taylor, Alfonso Thomas, Ashish Nehra, Imtiyaz Ahmed, Kamran Khan, Murali Kartik, Ganesh Gaikwad, Harpreet Singh, Dheeraj Jadhav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shrikant Mundhe, Sachin Rana, Rahul Sharma, Shrikant Wagh