After months of speculation, long periods of discussion, relocation to a different country and weeks of quarantine, finally the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 is here and will kickstart with cricket’s very own ‘El-Clasico’ – Mumbai Indians vs Chennai Super Kings.
The main reason as to why Mumbai Indians vs Chennai Super Kings is labelled as the greatest IPL rivalry is because in recent years, Mumbai have had the wood over Chennai. They are the only team in the IPL who have dominated the mighty Super Kings, with no other team having a better win percentage against the three-time champion.
The Chennai Super Kings have lost against the Mumbai Indians 16 times in the history of the competition and have a win percentage of just 40.74. Most recently, these two sides locked horns in Hyderabad for the final of the 2019 IPL, where just one run was the margin of defeat that helped Mumbai clinch their fourth IPL title.
Kieron Pollard vs MS Dhoni
Kieron Pollard has had plenty of success against the Super Kings. He averages more than 34 against CSK and has smashed the most number of sixes by any batsman against Chennai – 33.
MS Dhoni had a stellar 2019 IPL with the bat as he was CSK’s leading run-getter of the season. His personal record against the Mumbai Indians is also pretty decent. He averages 34.89 and has scored 663 runs against them in the history of the competition. With Raina’s departure from the squad, Dhoni will have to take the burden of batting relatively higher up the order. He may be rusty coming into this particular match but scoring more than 20.50 runs seems like a gamble worth taking on captain cool.
PLAYER TO WATCH OUT FOR
Since the last performing season of T20s, no player in the Mumbai Indians batting line-up averages more than Suryakumar Yadav. In 11 matches, Surya has scored 392 runs at an average of 56.00. He was Mumbai Indians’ second-best batsman of the title-winning season in 2019 and will look to continue his good form in this IPL. He’ll predominantly bat at number three and will get the time in the middle which he deserves.
Here’s how both the teams could line up:
Mumbai Indians: Quinton de Kock (WK), Rohit Sharma (C), Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah
Chennai Super Kings: Shane Watson, Faf du Plessis, Ambati Rayudu, MS Dhoni (C) (WK), Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Dwayne Bravo, Piyush Chawla, Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur, Imran Tahir
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