55 matches have been played and yet the final match of the League stage will decide the fate of the teams to make it to the play-offs. Can the Indian Premier League be more interesting? This season of IPL has definitely been the most closely fought as this is the time in the history of the tournament the team bagging 12 points have finished last on the table.
The Tuesday encounter will feature the 2016 champions Sunrisers Hyderabad and table toppers Mumbai Indians. The 56th and final match of the Indian Premier League is scheduled to be played at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. Sunrisers have to defeat the mighty Mumbai side to get through the play- offs. Unlike other other teams the Sunrisers will have to worry about the net run rate as they have the second best net run rate after their opposition Mumbai Indians.
The match will be a dead rubber for the Mumbai Indians as even a defeat in this encounter would finish them in the top spot courtesy of their 18 points from their 9 wins. This does give them a chance to rest their key players as they will be taking the field again on the coming Thursday for the Qualifier 1.
Both the teams will come into this match on the back of wins. David Warner and Co. had a thumping five- wicket win against the Royal Challengers Bangalore. While, the Mumbai Indians dominated the Delhi Capitals from the start and finished on the winning side by a comfortable margin of nine wickets.
The last time the two sides met, the result was in favor of the table toppers Mumbai Indians. The Indians after winning the toss elected to bat first. Their captain Rohit Sharma dismissed early in the innings but fellow opener Quinton de kock along with the other MI batsmen ensured the team got to a good total of 208. The SRH did start on a positive note and at 94/2 in the first 10 overs, the Sunrisers looked in the driver’s seat. But the excellent death bowling by the MI bowlers made sure the four times champions won the match by a comfortable margin of 34 runs.
The scenario is clear cut for David Warner and Company. Defeat the Mumbai Indians and they will be through to the play-offs. Can the Sunrisers make it three out of three and march towards their 2nd IPL title? Or will the mighty Mumbai Indians prove too strong for the Hyderabad team?
Head to Head
Matches Played- 15, SRH- 7, MI- 7, Tie- 1
The SRH will have to deal with a huge blow as the all- rounder has been ruled out of the tournament due an hamstring injury. He was replaced by the young Abishek Sharma. Though the replacement of Saha as the opener along with Warner seems to be working well. The English opener Jonny Bairstow could make a return for the struggling Kiwis Batsman Kane Williamson.
Mumbai Indians on the other hand are free to experiment the playing Xl as the result would not affect them in any way. This may give an opportunity to try the hard- hitter Chris Lynn, while they can rest one of their foreign players. With Mumbai Indians having to take the field once again in a day’s gap, they are likely to rest their key players for the all- important clash.
Pitch and Conditions
The Sharjah pitch has slowed down considerably as the last few matches have been slow scoring encounters. While we saw a poor batting performance by the Bangalore side against the Sunrisers as they managed to score only 120 runs. Said that, a score of anything above 160 is likely to put the team chasing under pressure. The due was not seen playing an important role in Sharjah when compared to the other grounds- Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
The conditions are once again in favor of cricket as clear skies are expected throughout the day with no chance of rain whatsoever. The temperatures are expected to hover in the range of 28-31 degree range. While the humidity at peak is expected to reach the 56 percent mark and the lowest being 48 percent.
Probable Playing Xl
Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH): David Warner (c), Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Manish Pandey, Kane Williamson/ Jonny Bairstow, Abdul Samad, Jason Holder, Abhishek Sharma, Rashid Khan, Shahbaz Nadeem, Sandeep Sharma, T Natarajan
Mumbai Indians (MI): Ishan Kishan, Quinton de Kock (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Saurabh Tiwary, Krunal Pandya, Kieron Pollard (c), Jayant Yadav, Nathan Coulter-Nile/ Chris Lynn, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah
David Warner (SRH) vs Trent Boult (MI)
The former Australian captain David Warner is having a decent season according to his standards. But he is someone who fires when the team needs him the most. This match is a must win for SRH and he will know how important his role in the team will be. The Sharjah ground will suit the southpaw the best and he will be looking to make full use of the advantage.
While his wicket is priceless in any tournament. The MI will definitely have a plan against the pocket dynamite. The kiwis spearhead Trent Boult has been on a wicket- taking spree this season as the veteran has already picked up 20 wickets and only 3 behind the purple cap winner, his team-mate Jasprit Bumrah. The task is well cut-off here for him.
In what promises to be a mouth- watering encounter when the Australian and Kiwi clash against each other. Who do you think will prevail?
Ishan Kishan (MI) vs Jason Holder (SRH)
Came in as a replacement for the injured Saurabh Tiwary. But now it has become difficult to keep this youngster out. He was made to bat at the No.3, he scored runs freely. With the injury of their captain Rohit Sharma, he was made to open and he once again piled up the runs. Ishan Kishan, the current sensation is already showing us he is one of the future aspects for Team India and it would not be long before see the wicket- keeper batsman play for the country.
Where was all this while? The West Indian all- rounder was made to sit on the bench for the first 9 games and then was given a chance to take the field. The West Indian not only performed, he made sure he made a statement as he ran through the batting line up of Rajasthan Royals. Ever since he has been picking up wickets at will and he is someone the young Ishan Kishan will have to watch out for.
Can the MI opener keep dominating the bowlers? Or will Jason Holder see the back of him?
The Mumbai Indians look much stronger than the Sunrisers on sheets as the Mumbai side have got all their departments well covered and with no doubts are the strongest team in the tournament. The Mumbai Indians though have nothing to lose here. While, the Sunrisers have everything to play for in this match as a win against the mighty MI will get them through to the play-offs.
The Mumbai team will definitely be looking to bring in a couple of changes keeping in mind the fact that they will have to take the field once again on Thursday. The resting of few players might give the SRH side a slight advantage here as the new faces could underperform due to the lack of match practice. The conditions look well in favor of the MI due to the fact that they have a very strong batting unit blended with hard- hitters.
Lot will depend on the shoulders of the SRH captain David Warner. The Australian will have to play a bold innings and lead his team from the front, if they are to get past the table toppers.
Cricwizz predicts Sunrisers Hyderabad to win the match