Defending champions Mumbai Indians are back in action today (October 6) as they face Rajasthan Royals at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. Both teams will have everything to play with an eye in the top four of the points table.
Mumbai Indians have carried on their last season’s form with three wins from five games and the playing XI already looking set and composed. It looks like they have buried their memories from UAE in 2014 like it never existed. The top three batsmen have put on runs on the board and with the finishers firing and the bowling attack one of the most lethal in the competition – Mumbai is a top hurdle to cross for other sides.
Mumbai-Rajasthan lock horns for two crucial points
This is even after Jasprit Bumrah’s inconsistency and Hardik Pandya now bowling. Kieron Pollard has stood up to the task and has done a splendid job along with James Pattinson, who also deserves a special mention. Rajasthan Royals will have their task cut out against Mumbai Indians on Tuesday’s encounter.
The Royals have blown hot and cold so far in IPL 2020. Jos Buttler is yet to fire on top and with Steve Smith striving for consistency, the top-order looks a bit wobbly. Rajasthan might ponder to bring young Yashasvi Jaiswal in and push him at the top alongside Buttler while Smith slots in the middle-order to settle the nerves.
Ace all-rounder Ben Stokes has already landed in the UAE but will not be available for selection as he is currently under his mandatory quarantine. Rajasthan Royals will take their good record against Mumbai Indians since returning to IPL in 2018 in their stride, and produce a stellar effort.
Head to Head
The temperatures will hover around the mid-30s which is likely to take a toll on the player’s fitness. There are no chances of precipitation during the course of the game.
Dew has been one of the most debated topics so far in IPL 2020. Teams are yet to figure out whether to bat first or chase in Abu Dhabi. Long boundaries will augur well for the bowlers and will be challenging for the players.
Mumbai Indians’ fast bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile is yet to hit the fitness, but they will not rub their head over his unavailability.
Speaking about Rajasthan Royals, Ben Stokes will not be available for selection; however, not for injury reasons. He is under quarantine and will join the training soon.
Predicted Playing XI
Rajasthan Royals: Jos Buttler (wk), Yashasvi Jaiswal/Robin Uthappa, Sanju Samson, Steve Smith (c), Riyan Parag. Mahipal Lomror, Tom Curran, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Jaydev Unadkat/Varun Aaron
Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (c), Quinton de Kock (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, James Pattinson, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah
Rajasthan Royals vs Mumbai Indians – Fantasy Tips
Jos Buttler – A big is on the cards from the Rajasthan Royals wicket-keeper batsman. He is yet to fire and this can be the game, Buttler sets his records high.
Jofra Archer – The fast bowler from Barbados is an important pick in the fantasy side. He has been of top-notch with the ball and has also chipped in with some crucial runs in the lower-order.
Rohit Sharma – Rohit Sharma will be eyeing a big knock tonight after getting out cheaply in the last game. He will fancy his chances in Abu Dhabi. He is currently the leading run-scorer for Mumbai Indians with 176 runs from five outings.
Captain and Vice-Captain Picks
Captain Options – Rohit Sharma, Steve Smith
Vice-Captain Options – Jos Buttler, Kieron Pollard
Fantasy 11 Team
Keeper – Jos Buttler (vc), Quinton de Kock
Batters – Steve Smith, Riyan Parag, Rohit Sharma (c), Suryakumar Yadav
All-Rounders – Rahul Tewatia, Kieron Pollard
Bowlers – Jofra Archer, James Pattinson, Trent Boult