Royal Challengers Bangalore Look To Keep Momentum Going Against The Mumbai Indians
Venue: DSC Cricket Stadium, Dubai
Time: 4 PM IST
Of the 29 T20 Internationals played at this venue, 16 matches have been won by the team batting second, 12 by the team batting first, and one match has been tied, hence making it a fairly even playing ground. As we have already seen in Abu Dhabi and Sharjah, the pitches are expected to have a heavy covering of grass to hold the crumbly surface together, which could make it a bit two-paced, but still good for batting.
Head To Head:
Of the last 5 matches played between the 2 sides, things are fairly balanced out with RCB winning 3 and MI winning 2. Things have always been competitive between these teams, but with new squads, things may pan out differently.
These are still early days in the tournament, but the teams lie at opposite ends of the spectrum. While MI lost resoundingly to KKR, RCB inflicted some pain when they defeated DD. MI have a cutting edge in Lasith Malinga, but it is up to the other bowlers to step up now. Even in the batting order, Mumbai have a lot of big names but it is all about them clicking by finding their right position in the line-up.
RCB appear to have all bases covered, perhaps barring the leakage of runs in the death overs. Mitchell Starc looked sharp on his IPL debut and Yuzvendra Chahal turned heads with his impressive leg-spin. Virat Kohli was consistent as usual, and Yuvraj came to the party to silence his critics.
Preview Of The Teams:
With reports of Chris Gayle being fit in time for the clash, RCB fans can take solace in the fact that their already strong batting lineup will be bolstered even more. Parthiv Patel looked good and punchy in the short cameo he played the other day to get RCB off to a flier. With Virat Kohli and a back in form Yuvraj Singh, the batting order is formidable to say the very least (don't forget de Villiers and Albie Morkel). The bowling attack worked well, hunting in tandem. Mitchell Starc caused some problems with his height and pace, and Morkel with his control. Varun Aaron bowled a very economical spell while Chahal took all the plaudits for a #SeizeTheDay performance.
Mumbai Indians had got off to a good start with their bowling against KKR but let things slip away by not picking any wickets in the middle phases of play. Though their entire bowling attack is made of only international players, they still have to bring it all to the fore to support Malinga. The batting order too has to get their act together. Hussey had an off game the previous time, but that can’t be expected to happen every time – being the class player he is. Tare is someone who holds a lot of potential. Rohit rather than batting at 4, should promote himself to no. 3 or even open the innings. As for the new signing, Corey Anderson, he should look to gel in and start performing quickly because he holds the key to balancing the side.
Yuvraj Singh is a proven match player and he can blow away any attack when on song. He showed his credentials in the previous match against DD. With his ability to contribute in the field and bowl some handy left arm spin, Yuvraj is definitely a key player for RCB.
The key player for MI has to be Lasith Malinga. He can bowl yorkers at will and has a whole bag of tricks and variations up his sleeve. The smiling assassin did no harm to his reputation when he picked up 4 wickets in the IPL 7 curtain raiser while also keeping things tight from his end.