MI vs RR: Match preview, head-to-head records and pitch report
The IPL 2019 has almost reached the half-way mark. The match number 27 is going to be a clash of the titans, as Mumbai Indians take on Rajasthan Royals at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Saturday. While Mumbai aim to rise to the second spot, Rajasthan would look to improve their chances of making into play-offs. Here we present the match preview.
Mumbai win a thriller against Punjab, Rajasthan suffer heartbreak
Mumbai are coming off a convincing, but a thrilling last ball win over Kings XI Punjab in Mohali. They edged past them by three wickets. Rajasthan, on the other hand, suffered heartbreak when they lost to defending champions Chennai Super Kings, by four wickets in another last ball finish. Given Mumbai would enjoy home advantage today, they enter as clear favorites.
Ben Stokes, Kieron Pollard among men to watch out for
As for the players who are likely to make an impact, Rajasthan's Ben Stokes has been in fine form all-around. However, his final over howler in the last tie has surely raised eyebrows. For Mumbai, stand-in skipper Kieron Pollard would be watched out for, following his prolific innings of 83 in the last match. Regular skipper Rohit Sharma still remains doubtful, following his injury.
Mumbai hold mild edge over Rajasthan
Considering the head-to-head ties between the sides, it has been more-or-less close. In 19 IPL matches, Mumbai have 10 wins, while Rajasthan have eight. 17 matches have been played in India, as Mumbai have won 10. In Mumbai, out of eight matches, six have been won by Mumbai, while Rajasthan have pocketed just two. Thus, Mumbai have the edge playing at home.
A high-scoring track awaits at Wankhede
The Wankhede track is typically known to assist batsman, and we have seen the same story this term as well. An average score of 180 plus has been par on this track so far this season. In the last tie, Mumbai chased down a target of 198 at Wankhede and in the same light, the team winning the toss might decide to bowl first.
Here's the predicted Playing XI
MI: Siddhesh Lad, Quinton de Kock, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Krunal Pandya, Kieron Pollard (c), Hardik Pandya, Rahul Chahar, Alzarri Joseph, Jason Behrendorff, Jasprit Bumrah. RR: Ajinkya Rahane (c), Jos Buttler, Steven Smith, Sanju Samson, Rahul Tripathi, Ben Stokes, Riyan Parag, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat, Dhawal Kulkarni. Dream XI: Buttler, Rahane, Smith, Suryakumar, Pollard, Stokes, Pandya, Krunal, Gopal, Archer, Bumrah.
When, where and how to watch
Match: Mumbai Indians (MI) vs Rajasthan Royals (RR). Venue: Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai. Time: 4 PM (IST). Where to watch (TV): Star Sports 1, 2, Select 1 and other regional channels of Star Sports. Where to watch (Online): Hotstar.