Big picture – Mumbai Indians’ bowling looks thin
Royal Challengers Bangalore’s quest for their maiden IPL title is still on but they have been pretty consistent of late, making the playoffs in each of the last three seasons. This run has also coincided with them not playing at their home ground, M Chinnaswamy Stadium – theirs is one of the poorest home records for an IPL team. This season, they play six of their first eight games in Bengaluru, which could dictate how their campaign goes.
Team news – big names missing
Toss and Impact Player strategy
Royal Challengers Bangalore
Royal Challengers don’t have many exciting options on the bench to make full use of the Impact Player rule. In fact, they can go with the same XI irrespective of whether they are batting or bowling first.
Probable XI: 1 Faf du Plessis (capt), 2 Virat Kohli, 3 Mahipal Lomror, 4 Glenn Maxwell, 5 Michael Bracewell, 6 Dinesh Karthik (wk), 7 Shahbaz Ahmed, 8 Harshal Patel, 9 Akash Deep, 10 Reece Topley, 11 Mohammed Siraj
Mumbai are not placed any better in terms of Impact Player options. Left-arm spinner Kumar Kartikeya is probably their best option, and could replace Tilak Varma when they are bowling.
Probable bat-first XI: 1 Rohit Sharma (capt), 2 Ishan Kishan (wk), 3 Suryakumar Yadav, 4 Tilak Varma, 5 Tim David, 6 Cameron Green, 7 Ramandeep Singh, 8 Jofra Archer, 9 Hrithik Shokeen, 10 Sandeep Warrier, 11 Jason Behrendorff
If they are bowling first, Kartikeya starts; Varma replaces him in the second innings.
Probable bowl-first XI: 1 Rohit Sharma (capt), 2 Ishan Kishan (wk), 3 Suryakumar Yadav, 4 Tim David, 5 Cameron Green, 6 Ramandeep Singh, 7 Jofra Archer, 8 Hrithik Shokeen, 9 Sandeep Warrier, 10 Jason Behrendorff, 11 Kumar Kartikeya
Stats that matter – tie Kohli up with spin
- During the recent T20I series against New Zealand, Ishan Kishan found it difficult to get going against Michael Bracewell, falling to him twice in 13 balls for just seven runs.
- Harshal Patel has dismissed Rohit three times in 23 balls while conceding only 27 runs.
- Since the start of 2022, Kohli’s T20 strike rate against spin is 119.75. Against pace, it’s 137.35.
Pitch and conditions – Home disadvantage
“Mumbai Indians have got a good record here. But that’s all in the past. There’re new characters within the teams. So you can sort of take that from a confidence perspective and try to infiltrate that into the players. But the bottom line is you don’t win the game of cricket on paper.”
Mumbai head coach Mark Boucher is not dwelling much on the past
Hemant Brar is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo
News Source: https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/indian-premier-league-2023-1345038/royal-challengers-bangalore-vs-mumbai-indians-5th-match-1359479/match-preview