After an thrilling one month of action packed cricket contests. It is the time for the big finale which is going to be played at a neutral venue in Hyderabad. Mumbai Indians who were considered as favorites to lift the cup have made it into the final after facing a defeat against the same opposition (Rising Pune Supergiant) in qualifiers. Rising Pune Supergiant weren’t off to the best of the starts in initial stage of IPL but the heroics of Ben Stokes and settled bowling attack helped them finish in top 2.
Mumbai Indians have a very balanced side with all 11 off them being match winners on a given day. Presence of Pandya brothers adds more balance to the team. They can bat , they can ball and can even fly while fielding. Their record against RPS has been poor this season they have somehow manage to loose on all three occasion from a commanding position against RPS.
Rising Pune Supergiant though they lack big match winners with unavailability of Ben Stokes and Imran Tahir . They will be high on confidence as Mumbai Indians have struggled to win games against them. Good performance from MS Dhoni and Steve Smith will be key.
Head to head
Overall: The teams have met five times, with Rising Pune winning four matches and losing one.
This season: Rising Pune have done the triple against Mumbai this season, winning by seven wickets at home , by three runs at the Wankhede and by 20 runs in qualifiers again at Wankhede.
Pitch & conditions
It has generally been a high scoring venue with lots of runs at offer but in last 2 games played here it has seen considerably low scores. There are two pitches at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium it will be interesting to see on which pitch the final will be played. Weather is going to be fine with no interruptions predicted.
In 7 games played at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium this season first inning scores have been (1-2 denotes match won by side batting first or second) : 207/1 , 135/2 ,159/1, 191/1 , 209/1 , 148/1 , 138/2 . Which is an average of 170.
Note : All the outstanding performances at this ground has been done by home team Sunrisers Hyderabad. How these 2 teams will fare out will be interesting to see.
Predicted XI :
Mumbai Indians : 1 Parthiv Patel (wk), 2 Lendl Simmons, 3 Rohit Sharma (capt), 4 Nitish Rana/Ambati Rayudu, 5 Kieron Pollard, 6 Krunal Pandya, 7 Hardik Pandya, 8 Karn Sharma, 9 Mitchell McClenaghan/ Mitchell Johnson, 10 Lasith Malinga, 11 Jasprit Bumrah
Rising Pune Supergiant : 1 Ajinkya Rahane, 2 Rahul Tripathi, 3 Steven Smith (capt), 4 Manoj Tiwary, 5 MS Dhoni (wk), 6 Daniel Christian, 7 Lockie Ferguson , 8 Washington Sundar, 9 Shardul Thakur, 10 Jaydev Unadkat, 11 Adam Zampa.
Watch out for
Daniel Christian : Everyone is talking about MS Dhoni & Steve Smith will be a key for RPS’s victory in finals veteran Aussie all-rounder is largely being un-noticed . He has been under the shadow of Ben Stokes throughout this season for RPS in Ben Stokes’s absence he is the man who can perform well in all three departments and take RPS towards their first title victory.
Krunal Pandya : He has made a name for himself after being called as elder brother of Hardik. He has shown that he is equally talented as his younger brother. Though he has not got many opportunities with bat in this season as compared to last season. His knock under immense pressure in qualifier against KKR was crucial for MI. He has been economical with ball , aggressive/dependable with bat and quick in the field. This is all which a player can do on a cricket field.
Stats & trivia
- Rising Pune Supergiant will play their last match as a franchise whether they win or loose. The franchise will be terminated after this season
- MS Dhoni will appear for 7th time in IPL finals in as many of 10.
- Rohit Sharma does not have a great record in IPL playoffs and knockout matches. In 12 innings for Deccan Chargers and Mumbai, he has scored 159 runs at 14.45 and a strike rate of 101.27
- Eight Mumbai batsmen have scored fifties this season, the most for any team.