Can RCB surprise bruised Mumbai Indians?

Royal Challengers Bangalore may have finally gotten a W against their name in the points table, but their joy might be short-lived when they run in to Mumbai Indians. Despite winning their first match of the season, RCB are still languishing at the bottom of the table and will need to win all their remaining fixtures to even have the slightest of hopes to make it to the Playoffs. RCB narrowly missed out on a win against MI when the two teams squared off previously failing to imply the finishing touches.

MI have picked up steam after initially showing signs of inconsistency. What makes them a stiff opposition is the fact that they don’t seem to give up easily. It is the same spirit that got them a hat-trick of wins and almost a fourth against the Rajasthan Royals and it’s what tips the scale in their favour. Their prime agenda should be to dismiss Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers cheaply, for without them firing, RCB’s batting has looked fragile.

Similarly, RCB’s biggest challenge will be to try and figure a way to tame Mumbai’s explosive batting line-up. Rohit Sharma and Quinton de Kock returned to form against Rajasthan Royals the other evening, in addition to the Kieron Pollard threat. Mumbai’s lower order has always bailed them out of trouble, with RCB will require to counter Hardik Pandya’s belligerent batting in the death.

What: Mumbai Indians vs Royal Challengers Bangalore
When: Monday, April 15
Venue: Wankhede Stadium
Time: 8 PM IST
Weather: Humid and sultry conditions with a highest of 33 degree

Team News

Mumbai Indians
Ishan Kishan has registered scores of 17, 7 and 5, and it wouldn’t be a bad idea for MI to bring back Yuvraj Singh into the fold. Alzarri Joseph has had two forgettable games following his dream debut against Sunrisers Hyderabad, going for 0 for 22 in two overs against Kings XI Punjab and 0 for 53 in three against the Royals. It should be a no-brainer to replace him with the experienced Lasith Malinga.

Probable XI: 1 Quinton de Kock (wk), 2 Rohit Sharma (capt), 3 Suryakumar Yadav, 4 Yuvraj Singh/Ishan Kishan, 5 Kieron Pollard, 6 Hardik Pandya, 7 Krunal Pandya, 8 Rahul Chahar, 9, Jasprit Bumrah, 10 Lasith Malinga 11 Jason Behrendorff

Royal Challengers Bangalore
RCB would be keen on sticking to the combination which fetched them their first win of the season. However, Mohammed Siraj went for 54 runs picking up a sole wicket. It may not be a bad move for the management to give Siraj rest and bring in their latest acquisition – Dale Steyn – to offer solidarity to their bowling.

Probable XI: 1 Parthiv Patel (wk), 2 Virat Kohli (capt), 3 AB de Villiers, 4 Marcus Stoinis, 5 Moeen Ali, 6 Akshdeep Nath, 7 Pawan Negi, 8 Umesh Yadav, 9 Dale Steyn, 10 Navdeep Saini, 11 Yuzvendra Chahal

Head to Head
Overall: 26
MI won: 17
RCB won: 9

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