The Mumbai Indians will look to avoid losing their first three matches of an IPL season for the first time when they take on the Kolkata Knights Riders this afternoon. Mumbai Indians have made it a habit of starting slowly before revving up as mid-season approaches.
Rohit Sharma’s side will look to get their first win of IPL 2022. Let’s take a look at the Betting Preview with some key stats and players to watch.
Despite their highest innings total so far this season of only 141/4 (against PBKS), KKR come into this match with a 2-1 W/L record, thanks in large part to the bowling department who have restricted the opposition to scores of 131/5 and 137 all out in the team’s two victories. Umesh Yadav’s five powerplay scalps have been a key reason for such a return.
Bowling was also a strength for KKR in the previous campaign where they ranked first for the fewest runs conceded (150.20 per match). It’s still to be seen whether the batting department has improved on last year’s seventh ranking (149.70 runs per game). The fact that Andre Russell is the team’s leading scorer (95 runs) having batted at six, seven and eight, probably suggests not.
While Mumbai come into this encounter having lost both of their opening matches, it is not all gloom and doom. Ishan Kishan has scored 135 runs from his two innings, while Jasprit Bumrah and Tymal Mills combined for six wickets in their last outing.
Mumbai have concerns over one bowling spot, currently occupied by Basil Thampi. In the opening game, Lalit Yadav and Axar Patel took him to the cleaners. In the second, he was carted for 26 in his only over. It might be time for a change. There’s plenty of experience in the form of Jaydev Unadkat, but the only hitch is he’s nearly like-for-like to Tymal Mills, in terms of his slower variations and left-arm variety.
So far with the bat, the Knight Riders have expressed their desire to play an aggressive brand of T20 cricket. I expect them to continue with that in this game. It’s hard to see Mumbai India losing their third game on the trot but I still expect KKR to win this one.
Mumbai have won 12 of the last 14 H2Hs.
Three of the last seven first-innings scores at Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium have surpassed 200.
In 16 IPL games at this venue, pacers have picked up 3.8 wickets per innings as compared to spinners, who have managed just 1.6.
In the last three matches that Ishan Kishan has been Mumbai’s best batsman, he has also been the highest scorer of the match.
Players To Watch
Sunil Narine (KKR) has the combined figures so far this season of 2/50 (12 overs bowled), while he is also just five wickets away from 150 IPL dismissals. Facing him at the other end will be Rohit Sharma (MI), who has a batting average of 46.14 against Kolkata for his best return against an active IPL team. From his 29 innings, he has finished not out on seven occasions while also passing fifty, seven times.
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