IPL 2020: Gautam Gambhir, Aakash Chopra and other experts pick the contenders for playoffs; Mumbai Indians stand out

IPL 2020: Gautam Gambhir, Aakash Chopra and other experts pick the contenders for playoffs; Mumbai Indians stand out

Ian Bishop and Aakash Chopra pinned their hopes on RCB as well.

Mumbai Indians
Mumbai Indians. (Photo: Surjeet Yadav/IANS)

The pitches in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for the 2020 Indian Premier League (IPL) are expected to be on the slower side. Hence, the teams with quality and experienced spinners are expected to rule the roost. However, Aakash Chopra, Gautam Gambhir, Ian Bishop among other experts, picked Mumbai Indians (MI) as the common contender to qualify for the playoffs.

MI, led by Rohit Sharma, are the four-time IPL winners, but their spin-attack doesn’t seem to be the strongest with Rahul Chahar and Krunal Pandya being the most experienced ones. Apart from Tom Moody and Gambhir, the other pundits vouched for the Chennai Super Kings (CSK). It’s pertinent to note that CSK have made the IPL semis/playoffs every other time since 2008.

MS Dhoni and Co also have loads of spinners in their ranks despite Harbhajan Singh backing out of the tournament. In the meantime, Bishop, Dasgupta and Chopra picked Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) as a playoff-contender. RCB, after making the finals in 2016, have strained in the last three seasons, finishing at the bottom-half of the points table after the first round.

Dasgupta and Ajit Agarkar also reckon that Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) have a fair chance of making the playoffs. But Gambhir, the former KKR skipper, didn’t pick the Men in Gold and Purple. Sanjay Manjrekar, Bishop, Gambhir, Moody and Chopra went for Delhi Capitals (DC) as well.

Moody, Gambhir and Manjrekar picked the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH), who have made the playoffs in the last four seasons. Moody and Gambhir also believe that Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) have the capability to make it through to the top four.

Here’s the experts’ choices for IPL playoffs: –

Sanjay Manjrekar– Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings, Delhi Capitals, Sunrisers Hyderabad

Ian Bishop– Mumbai Indians, Chennai Super Kings, Delhi Capitals, Royal Challengers Bangalore

Deep Dasgupta– Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Chennai Super Kings, Kolkata Knight Riders

Gautam Gambhir– Mumbai Indians, Sunrisers Hyderabad, Kings XI Punjab, Delhi Capitals/Rajasthan Royals

Tom Moody– Delhi Capitals, Mumbai Indians, Kings XI Punjab, Sunrisers Hyderabad

Ajit Agarkar– Mumbai Indians, Rajasthan Royals, Kolkata Knight Riders, Chennai Super Kings

Aakash Chopra– Delhi Capitals, Chennai Super Kings, Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore