Mumbai Indians and NSW Blues are set to clash in Chennai, on Sunday, October 2, in what is a must-win game for both teams, if they want to get past the group stage.
The rain that washed out Mumbai Indians’ match against Cape Cobras in Bangalore on October 30 has made it a sudden death situation in Group A and any team losing any game from here on will be out of contention for a place in the semi-finals.
Mumbai Indians with five points from three games could hope to reach a maximum of seven points by winning their last group game against NSW. The Australian outfit, like Chennai Super Kings, have two points from two games and winning both their remaining games would get them to six points, and a place in the semi-finals.Cape Cobras have three points from three matches and a win in their last group match would propel them to five points and a possible semis spot depending on a NRR comparison. Trinidad and Tobago have yet to win a match but with two games to go, could still qualify by winning both their remaining games, subject to other results being favourable to the Trinidadian’s cause.
At the start of the tournament, nobody would have given Mumbai Indians much chance of doing well in the tournament given that they were missing seven players including stars like Sachin Tendulkar, Munaf Patel and Rohit Sharma.But as things have turned out, they rose to the occasion in crunch situations to win two hard-fought matches.
MI have a clear edge over NSW who were below par in their first two games. Brett Lee and Doug Bollinger who play for the Blues in Australia’s domestic tournament are with Kolkata and Chennai respectively and in their absence the bowling lacks bite.
Against Mumbai, NSW will look to skipper Simon Katch and all-round Moises Henriques to lead the way. It was Henriques’ efforts that saw them through in a close game against Trinidad and Tobago but the Blues will need many more players to fire against a Mumbai Indians’ squad that appear to be peaking at the right time.
In fact, MI might well have won their rain interrupted game with Cobras at Bangalore, after piling up 176, their highest score of the tournament, on the back of a belligerent innings by Pollard.
How Mumbai bowl on a slow wicket could hold the key to this game and skipper Harbhajan, in particular, would want to prove a point or two after his omission from the Indian squad for the first two ODIs against the visiting England team.
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Jinxatious is the Chief Editor of SportingAttitude.com
An avid writer, on an eclectic range of subjects, he brings to bear editorial experience garnered with a national newspaper in South-East Asia. He also has sportscasting experience, as a cricket commentator, and his passion for sport extends beyond Cricket, to Football, Tennis, and Olympic Sports.