Mumbai Indians got the much-needed momentum in the match against Chennai Super Kings and now look a settled unit. They will hop across to Hyderabad to face the formidable force in Sunrisers Hyderabad. SRH have gone about their business without any fluster and are currently topping the table.
The hosts seem to have all the bases covered and at home, have the bowling and batting depth to upset the Mumbai cart. It becomes very important for the two captains to identify specific players and then look at ways and mean to neutralise their threat.
Here we take a look at three such player battles, and the side which wins these could well walk away with this IPL match.
David Warner vs Jasprit Bumrah
A match-up will not only set the tone of the game but could well be defining in the context of the game. Warner has been belligerent for SRH this season, he now needs 35 more runs to get past 500 runs against Mumbai Indians.
However, he will be up against Jasprit Bumrah, the man who has been the in-form bowler for not only Mumbai Indians, but also for India. They will faceoff in the powerplay overs and Rohit Sharma would ideally want his ace seamer to get rid of the left-hander as soon as possible.
In 28 balls bowled to him by Bumrah, Warner has scored 35 runs but has not been dismissed even once. Will this record change today?
Rohit Sharma vs Sandeep Sharma
Sandeep Sharma has always enjoyed himself with the new ball and when up against Rohit Sharma. Rohit has only managed to score 21 runs in 28 balls and has been dismissed twice over the years.
The Mumbai Indians skipper has looked good this season without going big and Bhuvneshwar Kumar would hope this trend remains the same. Sandeep will hold the key with the new ball and under lights, there will be swing and seam on offer in the initial overs, which is when Rohit will be vulnerable.
Kieron Pollard vs Rashid Khan
Kieron Pollard walked in late in the match against CSK, and then took off, he was off and running and his final flourish helped Mumbai Indians to get one over CSK in Wankhede. Also, he was brilliant in the field and will be crucial in the middle phase.
However, he will face Rashid Khan, who is brilliant. In Hyderabad, where the boundaries are quite big, Rashid will hold the key against Pollard. Over the years, the big West Indian has managed to score only nine runs in 17 balls and has been dismissed once.
So, who will win the duel in the middle order?