IPL 2017: Mumbai Indians vs Rising Pune Supergiant Preview

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Monday sees a particularly tasty IPL clash coming your way as the Mumbai Indians welcome the Rising Pune Supergiant to the Wankhede. 

There's no time to breathe following a pulsating weekend of IPL action which saw the Royal Challengers Bangalore grab the headlines for all the wrong reasons.

Monday will see two of the more talented sides go head to head as the Mumbai Indians welcome the Rising Pune Supergiant to the Wankhede! Who will come out on top as the Indians look to better their best ever sequence of results in the IPL? Let's take a look:

MI vs RPS | Monday 24 April 2017 | Wankhede Cricket Stadium | 16:30

To Win Match
Indians 62/100 | Tie 35/1 | Supergiant 27/20

Mumbai Indians
The Mumbai Indians are looking like the side to beat this season, winning all but one of their games so far at IPL 10. Keep in mind that their only defeat came in the second match of the competition against their Monday opponents, the Rising Pune Supergiant.

Things have changed since then, however, with the men from Mumbai finding their feet, brushing aside all who’ve stood before them.

Despite this domination, the Delhi Daredevils gave Rohit Sharma’s men a real freight on Saturday afternoon. An excellent bowling display from the Delhi franchise reduced the Indians to a meek 142-8 from their 20 overs. As it were, the Daredevils top order collapsed and they could only manage 128-7 as the Indians’ six-game winning streak continues, and the players will know all too well that winning ugly is sometimes key to a championship-winning season.

While they’ve been doing exceptionally well this term, there are one or two areas that Mahela Jayawardene will be worried about. Rohit Sharma’s woeful form has been a cause for concern and could force management to do the unthinkable and drop him for a game or two, something that will no doubt draw the ire of the Mumbai fans.

Other than the very well-paid elephant in the room, the side is doing well. Jos Buttler and Parthiv Patel have proven how important continuity is at the top of the order. The two have opened the batting in every single one of the Indians’ matches, adding 263 runs together at the top of the innings.

Bowling wise, the log-leaders look as solid as anything. Mitchell Johnson, Lasith Malinga, Jasprit Bumrah and Lasith Malinga are all fighting for three spots while Hardik Pandya, Harbhajan Singh and Krunal Pandya tend to bowl the balance of the overs.

The side on the verge of bettering their best winning streak since the inception of the competition. A win on Monday will see them surpass their previous run of six games in the inaugural edition of the IPL.

Rising Pune Supergiant
The Rising Pune Supergiant have struggled for consistency this season despite having an absolutely gun side. Steve Smith’s men have won three and lost three of their six matches this season and need to start finding their consistency if they are to host a play-off.

They’ve won their last two matches against the Sunrisers and the Royal Challengers but will need a special performance if they are to stop the ultra-consistent Indians.

Smith will be looking to the likes of MS Dhoni to put in a similar shift to the one he put in against the Sunrisers over the weekend. The Indian legend smashed his way to a 34-ball 61, winning the game for his side with the last shot of the match.

He was calmness personified and never faltered, even when the pressure was cranked up to near unbearable levels. Needing two to win off the final delivery of the game, he played a beautiful textbook drive to the extra cover boundary to secure his side’s third win of the season. A lesser player may have gone for a wild slog and squirted the ball to a player in the inner ring.

Another player to keep an eye on will be the skipper, Smith. The Australian has an unusually good record against the Mumbai franchise. In seven matches he’s mustered 272-runs with an excellent average of 68 – it could be worth having a small strike on the Sydney native to top score for the side at 26/10.

It’s also worth noting that Smith has been the side’s best batsman so far in the competition, scoring 207-runs in five matches at an average of 51.75. Other than the Aussie, nobody has really set the world alight for the Pune franchise in terms of batting. This will need to change if they are to mount a serious title challenge.

Rahul Tripathi has been decent while the big names like Ajinkya Rahane, Faf du Plessis have battled to make their mark on the tournament so far. The trend continues when you look at the bowlers. Only Imran Tahir – who was brought in late as cover for the injured Mitchell Marsh.

The South African leg-spinner was excellent against the Indians in the second match of the competition as he grabbed three quick wickets at the top of the order to put the brakes on the Mumbai innings. He’ll be all too aware of the damage Patel, Buttler and Sharma can do, don’t be surprised if you see Smith tossing him the ball inside of the PowerPlay.

Verdict: Mumbai Indians 62/100
The Indians have been red-hot this season and are on their own at the summit of the standings for good reason. Back them to come out on top at their Wankhede fortress this Monday – 62/100 offers solid value.

Value Bet: Steve Smith to top score for the Supergiant at 26/10
As mentioned earlier, Smith loves playing against the Indians. He’s also been the Supergiant’s best batsman this season by quite a stretch. Back him – with a medium stake – to top score at 26/10.

Written by Jason Dewey for @Hollywoodbets.net

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