Match 25 IPL 2017 (2017-04-22) @ Mumbai (WS)
Mumbai and Delhi have 3 victories each in matches between the 2 sides in the last 3 IPL seasons. Last season Delhi won at home and Mumbai won at their temporary home at Visakhapatnam.
Mumbai have been playing excellent cricket this season. They have a very settled side and appear to have found their best 11. They lost their first match batting first against Pune but have won 5 on the trot since. They have been lucky to win the toss and choose to chase on all five occasions.
Delhi have also been playing well. They have a balanced side with mainly Indian batsmen using their overseas players as all-rounders and bowlers. Chris Morris is currently the best all-rounder in the competition. The problem they face is that they have struggled to close out matches.
Delhi failed to chase down 157 in their first match. In the 2 matches that followed they opted to bat first and use their bowlers to contain the opposition in the chase. This resulted in two victories. Against KKR they tried the same tactic but failed to defend 168. In their most recent match they were set 191 by the Sunrisers but only reached 176.
The Wankhede Stadium has heavily favored batting second this season. All 3 IPL matches played there have been won by the chasing team. 9 of the 10 matches in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy Inter Zonal in February this year were also won by the chasing team. Mumbai are currently rated 103 on the Cricsq ratings. This is 18 points ahead of Delhi. They are also playing at home and in form. This should make them favorites to win. Their current price on Betfair is extremely short at 1.71. I cannot back them at this price.
If Mumbai win the toss they will choose to chase. The key question is if Delhi win the toss will they choose to bat first given they have always opted to bat so far. If they do this makes the toss irrelevant and the current price of 1.71 on Mumbai generous.
I want to be on the team chasing given the bias this season. I cannot take the chance that Delhi will win the toss and choose to field. For this reason I shall wait for the toss and back whoever bats second.
The Mumbai batting unit has been in great form this season. With the exception of captain Rohit Sharma, every player in the top 7 has played at least one decent innings.
Jos Buttler opens with Parthiv Patel. Buttler has scored 185 runs at a strike rate of 157. He got his first big score of the season getting 77 off 37 balls against Punjab on Thursday. In that match Patel helped Buttler get the team off to a flyer, scoring 37 off 18 balls. The team chased down 198 in 15.3 overs.
Nitish Rana is Mumbai's top run scorer with 255 at a strike rate of 142. He scored another 50 in that Punjab match batting at 3. Rohit Sharma has been out of form scoring just 49 runs in 5 matches. If he gets going the Mumbai batting will get even stronger.
The middle order consists of Pollard and the Pandya brothers. When the top order has failed, the middle order has bailed them out. Pollard has 164 runs with a strike rate of 143. Krunal has 88 runs at a strike rate of 144. Hardik has an amazing strike rate of 240 and has scored 88 runs.
Mumbai has a strong varied bowling attack. One slight chink is the economy rate of their seam bowlers.
Mitchell McClenaghan is their top wicket taker with 9. He has gone for 9.1 an over. Bumrah has 5 wickets and has gone for 8.6 an over. Hardik has 3 wickets at an economy rate of 8.3. Malinga has been very expensive going at 11 an over in his 4 matches. Southee has gone at 9.5 an over in the two matches he has played.
I understand the reluctance to change a winning team. But surely there is a case to give Mitchell Johnson a game instead of Malinga. He has gone for 0 for 58 and 1 for 51 in his last 2 matches.
Krunal Pandya and Harbhajan Singh. Krunal has taken 5 wickets at an economy rate of 6.9. Harbhajan has been even more economical going at just 5.9 an over. He has picked up 3 wickets.
Sam Billings and Sanju Samson have been opening the batting for Delhi. Billings has 138 runs at a rate of 135. Samson is Delhi's top run scorer with 215 runs. He has a strike rate of 142.
Rishabh Pant has been in fine form. He has a strike rate of 168 and has scored 141 runs. Shreyas Iyer returned to form against Hyderabad scoring 50 off 31. Delhi will be worried about their other Indian batsman Karun Nair. Nair only has 58 runs in 4 innings.For the last 2 matches Angelo Mathews has replaced Corey Anderson to bat at 6. Anderson was batting well. He had only played 2 innings. In first he scored 2 runs from 4 balls giving the strike to Morris. In the second he scored 39 from 22 against Punjab to help Delhi to a winning total. Mathews has been poor scoring 1 and 32 in 2 matches Delhi have lost. Anderson must return to the side.
Chris Morris has scored 74 at a rate of 238 runs per 100 balls. He is a high batsmen but when he does well the team usually wins. He normally bats at 7 but can come up the order if quick runs are needed.
Chris Morris leads the Delhi attack. He has taken 12 wickets with an economy rate of 6.6. Pat Cummings has also been good taking 7 wickets at 8 an over. The third seamer is Zaheer Khan. He has 7 wickets at 8.1 an over.
Jayant Yadav and Mohammed Shami have both been tried as a fourth seamer. Neither have taken a wicket. Yadav went for 8 an over and Shami for 9.3 an over
Amit Mishra is Delhi's preferred spinner. He has 5 wickets with an economy rate of 8.7. Shahbaz Nadeem has played just 3 matches with Delhi preferring to pick seamers. He has 4 wickets with a great economy rate of 4.9.
In the second all-rounder role it is now between Mathews and Anderson. As explained above Anderson is the preferred batting option. He is also the more in form bowler. He has taken 1 wicket to Mathews' zero and has an economy rate of 8.3 compared to Mathews' 11.2.
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