IPL 2021: Mumbai Indians v Royal Challengers Bangalore – Preview, Prediction, Probable Playing XI and Value Bets
Mumbai Indians v Royal Challengers Bangalore
M. A. Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai
Friday, April 9th, 2021
16:00 SA Time
The 14th edition of the prestigious Indian Premier League (IPL) has arrived and it’s the defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI) taking on Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) at the M. A. Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai. Mumbai Indians have historically dominated the rivalry between the two teams having won 19 matches out of 29. Although MI start as favourites, it’s important to note that they have not won their first match of the tournament since 2012.
Mumbai Indians have the most settled unit in the league. The five-time champions have most of their bases covered. MI have a formidable batting line up with two dynamic batsmen in the middle order in Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan. They also have enormous firepower at the back end in the trio of Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard and Krunal Pandya. Mumbai’s bowling could be highly dependent on Jasprit Bumrah with Boult and Milne untested in these conditions.
Royal Challengers Bangalore, on the other hand, have packed their batting unit with the addition of Glenn Maxwell and Finn Allen. With Virat Kohli set to open the innings, Maxwell’s ability to score quickly in the middle overs could serve RCB well coupled with AB de Villiers and Dan Christian at the back end. RCB’s bowling attack is a huge area of concern with no reliable pace bowling options. Yuzvendra Chahal’s recent form could also prove to be a headache for the franchise.
Injury and Availability News
RCB’s Devdutt Padikkal was found covid positive and while he has joined the squad after completing the quarantine, he might not be a definite starter. Kieron Pollard from Mumbai Indians has arrived late in India and there are some doubts over his participation in the first game.
Probable Playing XI
Rohit Sharma (c), Quinton de Kock (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard/Jimmy Neesham, Krunal Pandya, Adam Milne/Nathan Coulter-Nile, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Virat Kohli (c), Devdutt Padikkal/Shahbaz Ahmed, Rajat Patidar/Sachin Baby, Glenn Maxwell, AB de Villiers, Dan Christian, Washington Sundar, Kyle Jamieson, Navdeep Saini, Mohammad Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal
Pitch and Conditions
The M. A. Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai famously known as Chepauk Stadium has traditionally been a low scoring venue with significant assistance for spinners. The average first innings score at Chepauk in 2019 was only 144 in the T20 format. It is expected to play similarly this season too.
Key Players to Watch Out For
Suryakumar Yadav: Mumbai Indians’ number 3 batsman has taken his game to a whole new level in the last couple of years. Suryakumar Yadav amassed 480 runs at an outstanding strike rate of 145 in the 2020 edition of IPL. The Mumbai batsman also had a spectacular outing in his first T20 international innings against England. Suryakumar adds stability and scores at a brisk rate at the same time, making him a player to watch out for.
Jasprit Bumrah: Mumbai Indians’ Most Valuable Player has played a massive role in the franchise’s dominance in the league. Jasprit Bumrah had the best season of his IPL career in 2020 where he picked 27 scalps. The spearhead has taken 63 wickets in the last three seasons for MI with an economy under 7. Bumrah is coming back into the action after some rest and will be raring to go.
Virat Kohli: The most prolific run-getter in the IPL is slated to open the innings for RCB this year. Virat Kohli has always been more impactful when he gets in during the powerplay, which helps him make the most of field restrictions. Kohli has 2345 runs as an opener with a terrific average of 46.9 and strike rate of 140 in IPL. He’s primed to put on similar numbers this season.
Glenn Maxwell: The Australian batting all-rounder is an enigma. For nearly a decade, Glenn Maxwell hasn’t been able to crack the IPL. Maxwell, who’s arguably Australia’s best T20 batsman in recent years, has always struggled to make an impact in IPL apart from the 2014 season. With RCB having two batting powerhouses in Kohli and de Villiers, this could well be Maxwell’s redemption as the focus won’t be on him.
What Bets To Take
Quinton de Kock to be Mumbai Indians top batsman at 3.25.
Jasprit Bumrah to be Mumbai Indians top bowler at 3.00.
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Virat Kohli to be RCB’s top batsman at 2.90.
Yuzvendra Chahal to be RCB’s top bowler at 3.00.