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Thursday, May 23, 2024

Upbeat Delhi Capitals Take On Struggling Mumbai Indians As Playoff Race Intensifies

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New Delhi, Apr 26 (PTI) Bolstered by Rishabh Pant’s brilliant batting form and inspiring leadership, the resurrected Delhi Capitals will aim to continue their upward march in the IPL points table when they take on an inconsistent Mumbai Indians here on Saturday.
The Capitals have endured a rollercoaster season so far, showing flashes of brilliance while also succumbing to embarrassing defeats.

But three wins in the last four matches have helped them climb to the sixth spot and a win against MI will strengthen their claim to a play off spot.
On the other hand, after a familiar poor start, MI bounced back with three wins in their next four matches but a comprehensive nine-wicket thrashing by Rajasthan Royals put an end to their resurgence. They are tottering on the eighth place on the points table and can ill-afford to lose.

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DC’s biggest positive has undoubtedly been skipper Rishabh Pant’s form, which appears to be improving with each game.
He has looked sharp behind the stumps and seems to be batting with freedom. He was at his belligerent best during a match-winning unbeaten knock against Gujarat Titans on Wednesday.
It would be fair to say that the southpaw is in prime position to make India’s squad for the T20 World Cup despite stiff opposition from the likes of Sanju Samson, Dinesh Karthik and Ishan Kishan.

In Jack Fraser-McGurk, DC have found an able top-order batter who can exploit the powerplay but more is expected of opener Prithvi Shaw, given that his only responsibility is to bat as he is used as an Impact Substitute.
David Warner missed out the previous game, making way for Shai Hope, who couldn’t capitalise on the opportunity, and the veteran Australian might be brought back in the playing XI.

Tristan Stubbs has time and again proved he can be brutal with the bat while Axar Patel also showcased his batting prowess when he was elevated up the order in the four-run win against GT.
While the spin duo of Kuldeep Yadav and Axar have bowled economically, DC’s fast bowling unit needs to step up.
Pace spearhead Anrich Nortje is having a forgettable season and has leaked runs at 13.36 which has been a major problem for Delhi.

The likes of Khaleel Ahmed, Mukesh Kumar and Ishant Sharma have been plagued by injuries leading to inconsistent runs.
They were taken to the cleaners by MI batters, who piled on 234/5 earlier in the season. And DC would be wary of a similar performance.

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MI’s resurgence this season began with a win against DC and the five-time champions would hope for an encore in the crucial clash.
For Mumbai, Rohit Sharma, Suryakumar Yadav and Tilak Varma have got runs but all of them have found form in patches. It’s time for the likes of Tim David, Ishan Kishan and skipper Hardik Pandya to contribute a big way and take some pressure off the top trio.
While the batting department has occasionally looked good, the bowling remains a massive cause of concern.

Jasprit Bumrah has expectedly been MI’s standout bowler. He has led the attack with 13 wickets at an economy rate of 6.37.
However, new addition Gerald Coetzee has been inconsistent in his maiden IPL. Though he has an economy of 10.10, the South African pacer has accounted for 12 wickets in eight games.

But barring the two seamers, Mumbai’s bowling has disappointed.


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Delhi Capitals: Rishabh Pant (c), David Warner, Abishek Porel, Ricky Bhui, Yash Dhull, Shai Hope, Prithvi Shaw, Tristan Stubbs, Kumar Kushagra, Swastik Chikara, Ishant Sharma, Jhye Richardson, Rasikh Dar Salam, Vicky Ostwal, Anrich Nortje, Mukesh Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Praveen Dubey, Khaleel Ahmed, Sumit Kumar, Axar Patel, Gulbadin Naib, Lalit Yadav, Jake Fraser-McGurk.

Mumbai Indians: Hardik Pandya (c), Rohit Sharma, Suryakumar Yadav, Dewald Brevis, Jasprit Bumrah, Piyush Chawla, Gerald Coetzee, Tim David, Shreyas Gopal, Ishan Kishan (wk), Anshul Kamboj, Kumar Kartikeya, Akash Madhwal, Kwena Maphaka, Mohammad Nabi, Shams Mulani, Naman Dhir, Shivalik Sharma, Romario Shepherd, Arjun Tendulkar, Nuwan Thushara, Tilak Varma, Harvik Desai, Nehal Wadhera, Luke Wood.

Match starts 7.30pm IST.

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