In match 51 of the VIVO Indian Premier League 2019 (IPL 2019), Mumbai Indians will host Sunrisers Hyderabad at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Thursday.
Rohit Sharma-led Mumbai Indians are at third position in the IPL Points Table 2019 with 14 points in 12 matches, while Kane Williamson’s SRH is at the fourth spot with 12 points in 12 matches. A win is important for both the teams as any slip from here can break their IPL playoff dreams.
Chennai Super Kings and Delhi Capitals have already sealed their play-off spots, while the other two slots are yet to be decided. If Mumbai win the match, their ticket will be confirmed for the playoffs while a victory for SRH will take the team one step closer to the playoff berth. Hyderabad will go to the clash without season’s top-scorer David Warner (692 runs from 12 matches), who left for Australia to join the national camp ahead of the World Cup, which begins on May 30 in England. Martin Guptill might replace David Warner at the top in SRH playing 11.
Mumbai would look to take advantage of Warner and Jonny Bairstow’s absence, but it remains to be seen if Kane Williamson, Wriddhiman Saha and Manish Pandey can surprise the hosts. MI have been well-served by South African Quinton de Kock (393 from 12 matches) and captain Rohit Sharma (307 from 11) at the top. In hard-hitting all-rounder Hardik Pandya (355 from 12) and West Indian powerhouse Kieron Pollard (228 from 12), MI possess two batsmen who routinely take the opposition bowling attack to the cleaners in the last few overs of the innings.
The likes of Surya Kumar Yadav and Krunal Pandya will need to convert starts into bigger scores against the multi-pronged SRH attack in which Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan (14 wickets) has been the standout performer. The home side will miss left-arm Australian pacer Jason Behrendroff, who has also headed home to join the World Cup camp. Jasprit Bumrah (13 from 12), Lasith Malinga (12 from 8), Hardik Pandya (10 from 12) and spinners Rahul Chahar and Krunal Pandya form MI’s backbone in bowling. MI have won only three of their home games out of the five played so far and do not enjoy the earlier aura of invincibility in familiar surroundings.
The void left by David Warner and Jonny Bairstow would indeed be felt as SRH faces crucial matches and they cannot afford any mistakes here. SRH skipper Kane Williamson, Manish Pandey, all-rounder Vijay Shankar and comeback man Wriddhiman Saha will have to shoulder the responsibility. Martin Guptil, in all likelihood, will come into the playing 11. SRH bowlers have performed well in patches and need to get their act together against MI’s strong batting line-up. Sandeep Sharma (12 wickets from 11 matches), Khaleel Ahmed (11 from 6) and the experienced Bhuvneshwar Kumar (8 from 12), along with the Afghan spin twins Rashid and Mohammed Nabi, provide quality to the SRH bowling attack. The team would heavily rely on its bowlers to weave a web for Mumbai batsmen but Hyderabad’s top order will have to take a lead.
Here’s the playing 11 prediction for both the teams:
MI Playing 11: Rohit Sharma (C), Quinton de Kock (WK), Evin Lewis, Suryakumar Yadav, Keron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Rahul Chahar, Lasith Malinga, Jasprit Bumrah, Rasikh Salam.
SRH Playing 11: Martin Guptil, Kane Williamson, Manish Pandey, Vijay Shankar, Mohammad Nabi, Wriddhiman Saha, Abhishek Sharma, Rashid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Khaleel Ahmed, Sandeep Sharma