Wednesday, May 28, 2014

IPL 7 - It Will be a Surprise if Mumbai Indians Upsets CSK Today

By Carl Jaison:

Few would have thought that the Mumbai Indians would script a dramatic comeback that will not only ensure them a berth in the play-offs but also a ticket to the T20 Champions League. Apart from their dismal performance in the Dubai leg of the IPL, MI looked a depleted unit with the absence of their star performers Sachin Tendulkar who retired from all forms of cricket recently; Dwayne Smith who is currently with the CSK; and Lasith Malinga who has left the team due to national commitments.

However, a new crop of potential stars have emerged like Jasprit Bumrah, Ambati Rayadu, Aditya Tare, and Corey Anderson who have shown outstanding calibre and technique to dispel notions of the team sorely missing their original star performers.

Equal credit must be reserved for Rohit Sharma who has marshalled his troops with confidence and showcased his skills as a leader. The presence of seasoned campaigners like Keiron Pollard and Harbhajan Singh have instilled belief in the team, and it must also be mentioned that their mentor Anil Kumble have done his bit too.

Their batting has clicked in pressure situations but their spin department can’t boast about much success. With their eliminator against the consistent CSK outfit, Mumbai Indians will look to Harbhajan Singh to rattle their opening combo of Dwayne Smith-Brendon McCullum as they have done well against most pace-attacks.

Chennai Super Kings have once again found a place in the play-off berth indicating their prowess in making it to the business end of T20 leagues. Without doubt, Dhoni has found the right balance in his team starting from Dwayne Smith down to R Ashwin. CSK has remained the team to beat and they would seek revenge when they play against the Mumbai Indians after having lost the finals to them last year.

Dwayne Smith has muscled his way through to becoming a consistent performer with the bat though he could be utilized as an all-rounder too. McCullum too has created a niche for himself developing into a smart opening partner to the more aggressive Smith.

Suresh Raina has had a quiet season so far but one cannot forget his heroics with the bat when the chips were down. Along with Dhoni, David Hussey provides tremendous balance to this side and his useful off-spin bowling can come in handy.

CSK look strong on paper and with a much more settled unit, it won’t be much of surprise if they outclass the lucky and rampaging Mumbai Indians.

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