As the second qualifier of the Indian Premier League season 10 comes around, we take a look at the clash at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium with Rohit Sharma’s side Mumbai Indians playing Gautam Gamhir’s team Kolkata Knight Riders. Mumbai Indians [MI] are here after losing by 20 runs to Rising Pune Supergiant [RPS] and Kolkata Knight Riders [KKR] have made their place here due to a victory over title holders Sunrisers Hyderabad by 7 wickets.
Face To Face
This field belongs averagely and squarely to Mumbai Indians. In the 20 games between the two teams over the course of 10 seasons, Mumbai have won 15 games of 20 played versus KKR. And this season, too, the record stands in favour of the Rohit Sharma -captained MI. Kolkata lost both their games from a reasonably strong position. At Wankhede, Kolkata failed to defend 59 from 23 balls with Nitish Rana and all-rounder Hardik Pandya producing splendid knocks. And most recently in their last league match at home, Kolkata failed to chase 25 from 3 overs and lost wickets in a stack. That also resulted in them finishing fourth – as against the second they were intendid for with a victory.
Kolkata Will Have Better Extent Of Pitch
Bangalore’s pitch has been spread and the runs haven’t flowed this season. The best this season has been 161 runs by Steve Smith’s side Rising Pune Supergiant and even on Wednesday night, Sunrisers Hyderabad had trouble getting the runs on the surface. This is where things fall into Kolkata’s lap. They have an forgiving of how the pitch behaved when bowling – which they did adequately well – and then in the defined time in the middle, got some batting time too.
Gautam Gambhir Vs Rohit Sharma
Both skippers have a different style of approaching a match, behaving in a game and reacting to hard situations. While the Hitman [Rohit] behaves rather calm and composed in hard and pressure situations, The Kolkata skipper has over a period of time developed an combative side to himself that sets him apart from the rest and possibly heralds well for the side and their push for a final spot. With the bat, the Delhi batsman has been a boost for the team and sits second in the Orange Cap standings with 486 runs in 15 games. The Indian opener [Rohit], on the other hand, has 283 runs in as many games.
The Hit Fast Bowlers
Fast bowling is what defines both sides with variety of options – Indian and foreign – at the removal of both sides managements and skippers. Where the two champions [KKR] have the likes of Fast bowlers Umesh Yadav and Trent Boult, they were further reinvigorated with the services of Australian seamer Nathan Coulter-Nile who picked up 3 wickets versus Hyderabad. For Mumbai Indins, Kiwi pacer Mitchell McClenaghan and Indian seamer Jasprit Bumrah are top, top options for Rohit to use and the duo made the mark this season with 19 and 15 wickets respectively. If that’s not enough, The death overs specialist Bumrah produced the goods for Mumabai in the Super Over this season to highlight his primacy to bowl in crunch situations such as a qualifier.
Kolkata co-owner and Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan rued the absence of more improving time for the second playing team before the second qualifier. And that is where things could get tricky for Gambhir and company. Their game finished at nearly 1.30 AM and Coulter-Nile, too, pointed out that rules need to be considered at to avoid such late finish. But as it remains, Kolkata, despite playing a 26-over game with 3 hours of stoppage, would most likely be bored. In comparison, Mumbai have had time to regenerate, get their thoughts together after last playing in Mumbai on Tuesday.