Mumbai Indians travel to Mohali for their return game against Kings XI Punjab
By Arun Gopalakrishnan
Mumbai 24 April 2012
Two days after the Mumbai Indians and the Kings XI Punjab met at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, the two teams will met yet again. But this time around, it will be the Kings XI Punjab who will play hosts.
Kings XI Punjab, one of the less-fancied teams in the competition, pulled off a shock when they beat the formidable Mumbai Indians in their own backyard. David Hussey’s team is still languishing at the eighth spot in the IPL 2012 table, and they will want to start moving up the table before it is too late.
The Mumbai Indians were rated among the favorites at the start of the tournament, but they haven’t quite justified that billing. They’ve blown hot and cold, and have three wins from their six matches so far. Injuries to Sachin Tendulkar and Lasith Malinga too haven’t helped their cause, nor has playing on surfaces that don’t quite suit their game.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012, 04:00 p.m.
Punjab Cricket Association Stadium, Mohali
For Kings XI Punjab to do well, they will need the Australian duo of Shaun Marsh and David Hussey to score the bulk of the runs. Hussey is the leading run-getter in Twenty20 cricket, while Marsh has been a consistent run-getter for KXIP this season. In a format where one player can change the course of the match, KXIP will be well served if these two players can do the bulk of the scoring.
All eyes will be on Sachin Tendulkar who turned 39 on the eve of the match. The Mumbai Indians have struggled with their batting despite the presence of experienced players like Rohit Sharma, Ambati Rayudu, Dinesh Karthik and Kieron Pollard, and they need the most experienced of them all – Tendulkar – to anchor the innings just like he did last season.
The Mumbai Indians have also struggled with runs at the top of the order, and the move of promoting James Franklin to the top of the order came good last time around. Whether Harbhajan Singh and co. stick to the same order remains to be seen.
Historically, Kings XI Punjab have done very well against the Mumbai Indians. The team from Punjab has clashed with MI on nine occasions and have emerged victors in six of those contests.
In the most recent meeting between the two teams at Mumbai on April 22, 2012, Kings XI Punjab chased down 164 to win by 6 wickets thanks to Shaun Marsh’s unbeaten 68.
KXIP’s stand-in skipper David Hussey has appeared in four Twenty20 matches that ended in a tie – three of those were when he was captain of one of the teams in the contest.
Mumbai Indians’ Herschelle Gibbs holds the record for the most ducks in Twenty20 cricket; he’s been dismissed without opening his account on 19 occasions.
On April 28, Kings XI Punjab will take the field at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai when they square off against the defending champions Chennai Super Kings. The Mumbai Indians in the meantime will fly across to Delhi to take on the Delhi Daredevils on April 27.