Cricket

IPL 2021 | A must-win game for Mumbai Indians and Punjab Kings

The onus is on MI skipper Rohit Sharma to convert his starts into big knocks for Mumbai Indians to make a familiar comeback in IPL 2021.   | Photo Credit: PTI

While responding to a query on Hardik Pandya’s fitness, Mumbai Indians bowling coach Shane Bond had stressed last week the franchise was “balancing the needs of our team with Team India as well” ahead of the T20 World Cup.

Considering the wobbly form of its middle-order — especially that of Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan — the franchise, and possibly national selectors, would be hoping for a quick turnaround in fortunes to keep its title defence alive.

The duo’s performance will be under the scanner as MI takes on Punjab Kings in a must-win affair for both the teams. Forget about setting the IPL stage alight, as they have consistently done for the last three seasons, Suryakumar and Ishan have continued to misfire on either side of the league’s suspension.

No wonder the duo’s lack of runs has been a major factor in MI losing three games in a row since resumption and sliding to the seventh spot. While Suryakumar has tallied 17 runs off 29 balls in three innings in UAE, Ishan has scored 33 off 32.

While MI would be hoping for the T20 World Cup-bound duo to fire along with the burly hitters in Pandya brothers and Kieron Pollard, K.L. Rahul’s side would be eager to hold on to key moments, as it did against Sunrisers over the weekend and keep itself in the hunt for a Playoff’s berth.

If Chris Gayle comes into his element come Tuesday night, it could spell doom for Mumbai Indians, which is yet to win a game in the second leg of IPL 2021.

Squads:

Punjab Kings: KL Rahul (captain), Mayank Agarwal, Arshdeep Singh, Ishan Porel, Shahrukh Khan, Mohammed Shami, Nathan Ellis, Adil Rashid, Murugan Ashwin, Harpreet Brar, Moises Henriques, Chris Jordan, Aiden Markram, Mandeep Singh, Darsan Nalkande, Prabhsimran Singh, Ravi BIshnoi, Utkarsh Singh, Fabian Allen, Saurabh Kumar, Jalaj Saxena.

Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (captain) Quinton de Kock, Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Aditya Tare, Anmolpreet Singh, Chris Lynn, Saurabh Tiwary, Anukul Roy, Arjun Tendulkar, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, James Neesham, Jayant Yadav, Kieron Pollard, Marco Jansen, Yudhvir Singh, Adam Milne, Dhawal Kulkarni, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohsin Khan, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Piyush Chawla, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult.

Match starts at 7:30PM IST.


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Printable version | Oct 27, 2021 7:58:48 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/ipl-2021-struggling-mumbai-indians-face-inconsistent-punjab-kings/article36691318.ece

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