It’s the El Clasico of the IPL – Chennai Super Kings taking on the Mumbai Indians.
History has it as the battle between two successful teams, between two top sides led by astute white-ball captains, whose planning and execution have almost always been perfect. The two teams combined have nine IPL titles out of the 14 seasons thus far.
But what about 2022?
The mega auction seems to have robbed both Mumbai and the Super Kings of their cores, as both teams are languishing at the bottom of the points table. While the Super Kings have won one out of their six matches, Mumbai Indians are yet to get a win this season. And so, the El Clasico will perhaps still continue to be a battle of equals this year.
A defeat for Mumbai could be all but curtains for their campaign while a loss could put Super Kings on the brink.
In the news
Mumbai Indians: 1 Ishan Kishan (wk), 2 Rohit Sharma (capt), 3 Dewald Brewis, 4 Tilak Varma, 5 Suryakumar Yadav, 6 Kieron Pollard/Tim David, 7 Fabian Allen, 8 M Ashwin, 9 Jasprit Bumrah, 10 Tymal Mills/Riley Meredith, 11 Jaydev Unadkat
Chennai Super Kings: 1 Ruturaj Gaikwad, 2 Robin Uthappa, 3 Moeen Ali, 4 Ambati Rayudu, 5 Shivam Dube, 6 MS Dhoni (wk), 7 Ravindra Jadeja (capt), 8 Dwayne Bravo, 9 Chris Jordan/Dwaine Pretorius, 10 Maheesh Theekshana, 11 Mukesh Choudhary
Super Kings should play Dwaine Pretorius over Chris Jordan, who has been expensive in the middle overs (economy rate of 11) as well as at the death (economy of 13.04). Pretorius has fared better with the ball in each of those phases in the two games he’s played, having an economy of 6.80 and 10 respectively.
In Kieron Pollard and Suryakumar Yadav, Mumbai have two batters who can counter Dwayne Bravo, Chris Jordan and Pretorius. Both the batters strike in excess of 155 against the aforementioned bowlers. However, Suryakumar’s strike-rate against Ravindra Jadeja is 77 and he could well let Pollard, who strikes at 190, take matters in hand when facing the left-arm spinner.
Stats that matter
S Sudarshanan is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo