Struggling MI, RCB eye for survival

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 01 May 2018 11:47:45



STRUGGLING sides Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore will have a fight for survival when they lock horns in an Indian Premier League here on Tuesday.Having beaten Chennai Super Kings in their adopted home ground in Pune, MI will go out with their tails up with confidence to take on a strong batting line-up of RCB, which has the likes of Virat Kohli and Brendon McCullum.On the other hand, the heartbreaking back-to-back defeats at the hands of CSK and Kolkata Knight Riders in their backyard would have devastated the team’s confidence, but RCB will have to play out of their skins to stay in the competition.It has been an almost identical journey for both teams so far. Mumbai and Kohli-led RCB have managed just two wins in seven matches each, but the visitors are ahead at sixth place due to better net run rate.

Whichever team that loses on Tuesday will find it more difficult to get a shot at a play-offs berth.Mumbai would like to take a cue from their last encounter against RCB, which they had won by 46 runs at the Wankhede Stadium with Rohit Sharma and Evin Lewis hitting 94 and 65 respectively. Barring Suryakumar Yadav, who has 274 runs under his belt in seven matches as an opener, most of the Mumbai batsmen have been inconsistent. Captain Rohit, who has failed to get past 20 runs in five games, will try to play yet another impactful innings.The team would like Rohit, who has scored 196 runs in seven matches, to bat either one-down as he did in the last game or open the innings to give the much needed time for him to settle down at the crease.

Pandya brothers — Hardik and Krunal — who have been good in their bowling would like to get a big knocks with the bat as they have managed to score just 61 and 113 runs in seven-odd matches they have played.JP Duminy, who came in for Kieron Pollard in the last game, would be itching to be in the thick of things. The South African did not bat in the last match as Mumbai crossed the winning mark without his services.Mumbai also have been struggling with the ball as they have failed to prosper as a unit. Young Mayank Markande has been a revelation for them and has bagged 10 wickets from seven games with his leg-spin.

Rohit likely to bat higher up: Suryakumar MUMBAI Indians’ highest run-getter this IPL season, Suryakumar Yadav, said his captain Rohit Sharma is likely to bat higher up the order in the coming games.Rohit, coming in at number three, hit a match-winning 56 against Chennai Super Kings in Pune on Saturday, raising hopes of the team’s comeback. “It is his and team management’s decision to come down the order. May be he wants to take more responsibility by playing till the end. But, he has been performing at all numbers—at one-down or two-down. In the last game, he came up and shouldered the responsibility. Obviously, in coming games we can see more of it,” he told reporters on the eve of the RCB-MI encounter.