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Arun Gopalakrishnan in Mumbai 13 May 2012 - 09:01pm IST

Preview: Match 62 – RCB v MI

RCB host MI in a match with major playoff implications

What

Match 62 of DLF IPL 2012 will feature two teams that are still in contention for a place in the playoffs; Mumbai Indians, with 16 points from 13 matches sit slightly higher than the Royal Challengers Bangalore (15 points from 13 matches) in the points table. A win for MI here could propel them to second place in the standings, while an RCB win will see them displace their opponents from their current third position.

Despite all their riches, both teams haven’t been as dominant as one had expected them to be. However, with most of the pieces falling into place, both teams have started to look the part. And given how closely teams are packed in the race for the playoffs, expect both these sides to come out all guns blazing.

The Royal Challengers Bangalore come into this contest with the confidence of three consecutive victories behind them, while the Mumbai Indians caused an upset of sorts in their previous match by beating the formidable Kolkata Knight Riders in their own backyard.

When

Monday, May 14, 2012, 04:00 p.m.


Where


M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru


The Protagonists


Look no further than Chris Gayle for the one player who’s influenced RCB’s fortunes the most. Since joining the RCB squad midway through last season, the Jamaican has contributed close to a third of the runs scored by his team (the number shoots up to 36 percent in matches RCB have gone on to win). The other fact that best illustrates Gayle’s influence in RCB’s success is the fact that he’s won 10 Man-of-the-Match awards in the 24 matches he’s played for the team.

Rohit Sharma’s unbeaten 109, in the previous match against the Kolkata Knight Riders, was ample evidence that he is immensely talented. He’s been lacking consistency and the temperament to win matches. The Mumbai Indians management will be hoping the 25-year-old can take a lot of confidence from that century and play many more such innings in the future.

For the Mumbai Indians to unleash their force, they need big contributions from Sachin Tendulkar too. The Little Master has managed only one half-century in nine innings this season. With a lot riding on these last few matches, expect Tendulkar to step up to the party.

Previous Meetings

The head-to-head between the Royal Challengers Bangalore and the Mumbai Indians stands at five matches apiece. Interestingly though, whenever these two teams have met in Bangalore, it has been the visitors who’ve emerged victors.

In the three meetings between the two teams at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore, the Mumbai Indians have registered convincing wins; in IPL 2008 and IPL 2011, they registered nine-wicket wins, while in IPL 2010 they handed the hosts a 57-run thrashing.

In the most recent meeting between these two teams – at the Wankhede Stadium on May 9 – the visitors cruised to a nine-wicket victory in their chase of 142.

Trivia


Chris Gayle has won 10 Man-of-the-Match awards in the 24 matches he’s played for the Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Chris Gayle also holds the record for the most 50-plus scores in Twenty20 cricket; he’s scored 26 half-centuries and seven centuries.

What next?


In three days time (on May 17) the Royal Challengers Bangalore will be seen in action at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium when they square off against the Delhi Daredevils. The Mumbai Indians, meanwhile, host the Kolkata Knight Riders on May 16.

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