Mumbai Indians look extremely strong after winning five consecutive matches but will have to avoid complacency against Kings XI Punjab in the IPL on Sunday as the return of Chris Gayle has given a new impetus to their rival. A win will put Mumbai very close to the playoffs while Punjab may be out of the race with another defeat. Despite the two batsmen captain Lokesh Rahul (387 runs) and Mayank Agarwal (337 runs), who scored the most runs in the tournament, Punjab is at the bottom of the table.
Mumbai has been able to overcome the challenge of the opposing teams with its strong batting and lethal bowling. In the last match, they defeated Kolkata Knight Riders by eight wickets. Mumbai's top-order batsman captain Rohit Sharma (251 runs) and his opening partner Quinton de Kock (269 runs) are in good rhythm while Surya Kumar Yadav (243 runs) and Ishan Kishan (186 runs) are on top in the table. Are also doing well.
Bumrah-Bolt pair fatal
In bowling, Jasprit Bumrah and Trent Boult have just emerged as the most successful bowling pair of IPL. He has taken 12–12 wickets in eight matches. In the spin department, young Rahul Chahar has bowled impressively. In such a situation, the conflict between Gayle and Bumrah and Bolt will be worth watching. Punjab opener captain Lokesh Rahul and Mayank Agarwal can create a good platform for Gayle by reducing the impact of these two fast bowlers.
Punjab excited by Chris's return
The return of West Indies offensive batsman Gayle has increased the enthusiasm of Punjab. Gayle scored brilliantly in his first match, scoring 53 off 45 balls which included five sixes. With this, Punjab was successful in defeating Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore. Punjab's trouble is its bowling. Except for Mohammed Shami and Ravi Bishnoi, none of his bowlers have left an impact. His team has not been able to establish the right balance despite trying many options.
Teams Mumbai Indians:
Rohit Sharma (captain), Quinton de Kock, Surya Kumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard, Krunal Pandya, James Pattinson, Jaspreet Bumrah, Nathan Culter-Nile, Rahul Chahar, Saurabh Tiwari, Trent Boult.
Kings XI Punjab:
Lokesh Rahul (captain), Mayank Agarwal, Chris Gayle, Glenn Maxwell, Nicholas Puran, Simran Singh, Ravi Bishnoi, Mohammed Shami, Murugan Ashwin, Arshadip Singh, Chris Jordan, Karun Nair.