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Chennai Super Kings vs Mumbai Indians Preview
It’s fair to say that Delhi’s form has rocked the boat a bit for both Chennai and Mumbai. It looked like smooth sailing for both the teams at one point but a slight slump for Chennai and Delhi’s excellent recent form has put paid to that.
Chennai did pretty much the unthinkable by chasing down a high score at their fortress on a pitch that was still offering decent support to the spinners. Shane Watson’s return to form at pretty the perfect time also gives a significant boost as it does put to rest some of the worries that the team faces right now when it comes to its top order form.
Mumbai has been a bit consistent throughout the tournament with one of its major issues being the form of their captain. Rohit’s form has dwindled slowly but steadily throughout the tournament, and he averages in the 20s which is poor by any standards.
Chennai is almost through to the qualifiers, but Mumbai would be looking to snatch a win here to not be in the danger of getting caught by the other teams below them.
Chennai Super Kings
CSK would be relieved to get the another win on their home turf. Doubts remain on how the top order form will play out for the rest of the matches especially since Rayadu still wasn’t that fluent during his innings but with the team almost through to the qualifiers they can back their players and give them the freedom to express themselves.
With it being the second match on the bounce at the same venue CSK might be heading to the game with the same combination.
The player under the spotlight
Rayadu provided able support to Watson in the previous match, but when Watson got out, Rayadu wasn’t able to finish the job himself and ended up scoring at less than a run a ball. Although his spot might not be in danger but the lack of scores would be starting to weigh on him by now.
Probable XI: Shane Watson, Faf Du Plessis, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayadu, MS Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav, Dwayne Bravo, Ravindra Jadeja, Deepak Chahar, Harbhajan Singh, Imran Tahir
Form Guide (LWWLW)
Will Mumbai look to switch things up a bit by sending Surya Kumar Yadav to open and sending Rohit at 3? Or will they do precisely what Dhoni did, i.e. back the original combination to shine and deliver the goods? There could be a debate about strengthening the middle order which has probably one too many hitters. Yuvraj could get a look in or the team could try to exploit the turning wicket by sticking to the two spinners.
The player under the spotlight
Shane Watson from the opposing team was going through the same rut that Rohit is right now and maybe if it wasn’t for the innings he played against SRH we would have seen the last of him. We know what Rohit is capable of. All he needs is some time in the middle. We expect Rohit will deliver this time around.
Probable XI: Rohit Sharma (c), Quinton de Kock, Suryakumar Yadav, Krunal Pandya, Keiron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Ben Cutting, Jasprit Bumrah, Mayank Markande, Deepak Chahar, Lasith Malinga
The pitch is one of the slowest and driest tracks in this IPL but has been getting better in the last few games. The general trend is of pitches getting better but still providing decent assistance to the slower bowlers so a score of around 160 should be at Par here unless Watson decides to flex those biceps again.
Chennai Super Kings vs Mumbai Indians Prediction
The pitch, the conditions and to an extent the form and team combinations do give Chennai an edge. They might have suffered a bit from some mid-season slack, but now they’re up and running again and are our clear pick for winning this one.
CSK to Win @ 1.80 at William Hill