A place in IPL Final will be up for grabs when Kolkata Knight Riders meet Mumbai Indians in Qualifier 2.
Two-time IPL champions Kolkata Knight Riders and Mumbai Indians will lock horns in the second qualifier of the tenth edition of Indian Premier League in Bangalore. Kolkata will come into the game after an emphatic, and yet much delayed; 7-wicket win over Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Eliminator. Mumbai Indians, meanwhile lost to Rising Pune Supergiant in the first qualifier.
The winner of this match will register a berth in the final of IPL 2017. While Kolkata Knight Riders have regained their momentum with a confident win; Mumbai Indians, on the other hand, have won both their matches against KKR in the league stage.
Interestingly, both KKR and MI are vying for their third Indian Premier League title; something that will establish their superiority in the decade-old tournament, as no team has won it thrice, as of yet. With both the sides having played some scintillating cricket over the last few weeks; it is truly set to be a humdinger, as Rohit Sharma and Gautam Gambhir enter a battle of wits.
Ambati Rayudu and Nitish Rana batted in adjacent nets; yet there will be space for only one of them in the final line-up. Rayudu earned his spot after a half-century in MI’s last league stage game against KKR; but fell for a duck in the all-important qualifier. Rohit Sharma may lean towards the consistency of Rana, who has 333 runs in 12 outings.
Rohit Sharma could also have a decision on his hands with regards to Harbhajan Singh and Karn Sharma. Harbhajan hasn’t played since the game against Kings XI Punjab; but if packing the side with experience is on Rohit’s priority list, then the offspinner may get the nod.
Kolkata Knight Riders
Manish Pandey was ruled out of the ongoing Indian Premier League, late on Thursday evening with a side strain; and that is a big blow to the Knight Riders’ unit. Ishank Jaggi will look to repay the team management’s faith for handing him a debut in the Eliminator. Considering the pace troika of Umesh Yadav, Trent Boult and Nathan Coulter-Nile rendered a good balance to the attack; and Yusuf Pathan also considered to fill in with an over or two of spin; there could be a toss up between Piyush Chawla and Kuldeep Yadav for the spinner’s spot.
Head to Head :
Matches – 20
Mumbai Indians – 15, Kolkata Knight Riders – 5
Probable XI :
Lendl Simmons, Parthiv Patel (wk), Nitish Rana, Rohit Sharma (c); Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Harbhajan Singh; Krunal Pandya, Mitchell McClenaghan, Lasith Malinga, Jasprit Bumrah.
Kolkata Knight Riders
Gautam Gambhir (c), Chris Lynn, Robin Uthappa (wk); Yusuf Pathan, Ishank Jaggi, Suryakumar Yadav; Sunil Narine, Kuldeep Yadav; Umesh Yadav, Nathan Coultier-Nile, Trent Boult.