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IPL 2018: Match 21, RR vs MI, Preview- Mumbai in the quest to back to back triumphs

Rajasthan Royals have succumbed to two consecutive losses against KKR and CSK.

Rajasthan Royals
Rajasthan Royals celebrate a wicket. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The psychological conditions of the Mumbai Indians (MI) would have been severely dented following three nail-biting defeats. However, instead of allowing the same to unnerve him, they annihilated the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and announced themselves on the stage. They will next play the Rajasthan Royals (RR) who have had their fair share of struggles as well.

The Royals stormed back with a couple of victories after their loss against the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH). Nevertheless, the slumped against the Kolkata Knight Riders and the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) which have pushed them down the league table. Another defeat and they might find themselves in dire straits as the tournament nears the halfway stage.

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Their fortress has been uprooted by the Knights in the previous game. Nonetheless, they have every chance of restructuring their wrecked home with a resounding victory over the Indians. The track is expected to support the batsmen and both teams have explosive lineups up their sleeves. The Royals might have the edge in the game, but we have seen home-teams getting dismantled in the tournament.

Player Combination

Rajasthan Royals

Heinrich Klaasen’s experience at the top of the order failed and Rahul Tripathi might be sent to open along with Ajinkya Rahane followed by Sanju Samson. Jos Buttler and Klaasen are an explosive combination in the middle-order. Ben Stokes, who has been mediocre for them, has to deliver, with the Royals in grave danger.

The Royals’ bowers were taken apart by Chennai Super Kings and they would be hoping to make amends. Ben Laughlin has been impressive along with the domestic bowlers of Krishnappa Gowtham and Shreyas Gopal who have been able to get the measure of oppositions. Ben Stokes’ role with the leather needs to come to the fore the Royals as well.

Predicted XI

Ajinkya Rahane (capt), Rahul Tripathi, Sanju Samson, Jos Buttler (wkt), Ben Stokes, Heinrich Klaasen, Krishnappa Gowtham, Stuart Binny, Shreyas Gopal, Ben Laughlin, Jaydev Unadkat

Mumbai Indians

Rajasthan Royals

After their dominating performance against RCB, Mumbai won’t want to tinker with their lineup. Suryakumar Yadav and Evin Lewis are the likely openers followed by Ishan Kishan, who might make a comeback after his injury. Rohit Sharma takes charge at number four after which the Pandya brothers along with Kieron Pollard need to give the finishing kick.

The bowlers strained in the first three games, but made a strong comeback against Bangalore. Mayank Markande has been their standout bowler, having bamboozled batsmen with his prowess. Jasprit Bumrah hasn’t quite made the impact he is known for. Mitchell McClenaghan and Mustafizur Rahman are the overseas fast-bowlers.

Predicted XI  

Suryakumar Yadav, Evin Lewis, Ishan Kishan (wk), Rohit Sharma (capt), Krunal Pandya, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Mitchell McClenaghan, Mayank Markande, Jasprit Bumrah, Mustafizur Rahman

Players to watch out for

Ben Stokes- Rajasthan Royals

Ben Stokes scored few runs in Rajasthan’s erstwhile game against Chennai, but hasn’t looked at his stupendous best. Also, he hasn’t been up to scratch with the leather as he has only one wicket from five games in the tournament. The Christchurch-born all-rounder has to deliver in order for his team to overpower Rohit Sharma’s men.

Kieron Pollard- Mumbai Indians

Kieron Pollard is the cricketer from the Windies contingent who hasn’t been able to deliver just yet. Mumbai have a strong middle-order and the Trinidadian is one of the prime reasons for the same. With 33 runs in four outings, he has been off-colour, but  Mumbai would desperately need him going into the crunch moments of the tournament.

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Head to Head

Played- 16, RR- 6, RR- 10, NR/Tie- 0

Stat Attack

100th game of Hardik Pandya’s Twenty20 career.

Ajinkya Rahane scored 476 runs against Mumbai Indians in 13 IPL innings at an average of 43.27 with four fifties.

Broadcast details

TV– Star Sports 1, Star Sports 1 HD, Star Sports 1 Hindi, Star Jalsha (Bengali), Star Maa Movies (Telegu), Star Sports Tamil

Live Streaming– Hotstar & YuppTv

Match Timings: 20:00 IST, 14:30 GMT

For more cricket news and other stories, visit Crictracker.com.

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