IPL Match 15 Preview: Warriors Are Formiddable Challenge for MI

Pune Warriors are a new team with low profile players but against Mumbai Indians they have posed problems. Although MI has won 3 but they have lost 1 also and even in wins in the past two years they have faced challenges. In 2013 edition Warriors have one of the most balanced side. That would make their challenge bigger. But, Mumbai Indians have their own strength. They are good in all departments. If the pitch is as flat as they served to DD, Warriors have a better chance to win, considering their batsmen are more reliable than MIs.

History
Mumbai Indians won both the matches against Pune Warriors in 2011.
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.

The Second match saw Rahul Sharma emerging as the star performer but could not help his team avoid defeat, when Warriors failed to chase the target of 161 runs at Mumbai-based home.

Head-to-Head: MI 3, PWI 1
2011

    MI def PWI by 7 wkts
    MI def PWI by 21 runs

2012

    Warriors won by 29 runs, MOM: Steven Smith
    MI won by 1 run, MOM: Malinga

2008 Performance
In 2008, MI won 7 and lost 7.
2009 Performance
In 2009, MI won 5 and lost 8, with one match abandoned.
2010 Performance
MI was successful winning 11 and losing only 4.
2011 Performance
MI finished third, winning 10 and losing 6.
Playing in their first edition, Pune Warriors escaped finishing at the bottom of 2011 Points Table because of a better NRR than DD. They just won 4 matches, lost 9 and drew one match in their inaugural edition of 2011.
2012 Performance
Reached the knockout and finished 3rd, winning 11 and losing 8.
In 2012, Warriors sank further down losing 12 but winning the same number of 4 matches.

2013 Performance
In three matches, MI has won two and lost one, losing against RCB, but winning against CSK in away match and DD at home.
Pune Warriors India lost two straight matches against Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kings XI, but won the last one against Rajasthan Royals.

Overall Performance
Mumbai Indians have the best team record, after CSK with 45 Wins, 34 Losses, 1 NR.
Pune Warriors have one of the worst win, loss ratio with 9 wins and 23 losses, and one no result.

Key Battles
Rahul Sharma vs MI Batsmen

    Rahul Sharma’s IPL perfomance, specially against Tendulkar in the 2 matches earned him Indian Cap. For Mumbai Indians, he may be the key bowler to tackle again. Although, he earned the MOM in the second match of 2011 against MI, Rahul knows his business is not finished unless he takes his side to victory. His spell agianst RR made the difference as RR batsmen could not increase the pace of the innings and later on that resulted into a below par score.

    Finch/Uthappa/Yuvraj vs Karthik/Rayudu/Pollard
    Both teams have good number of pinch hitters, who can shape the innings also. While Uthappa and Yuvraj are known dangerous Indian batsmen, Finch proved his ability in Indian conditions also in the last match against Rajasthan Royals.
    For Mumbai Karthik and Pollard are on a roll. Rayudu has also been providing good quick support. The performance of these trio would decide the fate of the match.

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