MI need huge win to advance

MI need huge win to advance

Defending Indian Premier League champions Mumbai Indians are sitting on the fence in the Champions League T20 Championships. Few would have expected a below par run from a star-studded side which has notched up only one victory in their Group B league stage so far.

In their last group match, they are to face table laggards and out of race Perth Scorchers at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium on Wednesday.

With Rajasthan Royals already through to the semifinals, the Mumbai outfit is in fight with Otago Volts for the lone spot in the last four stage.

Volts had a great chance to seal their semifinal berth on Tuesday but the three-wicket loss to Royals has delayed their wait.

The defeat has left Volts in second place on 10 points while Mumbai are third on six points. However, Mumbai need to post a huge win against Scorchers as their nett run rate of +0.090 is way below Volts’ +0.869.

The solitary victory for Mumbai came against the Highveld Lions in their last outing that kept them in hunt in the tournament. They lost their opening match to the Royals while their second match was washed out. A resurgent Mumbai side gave comprehensive performance against Lions to assert their presence. They will need to keep up the tempo on Wednesday.

Coach John Wright hoped for good batting conditions. “We missed a match which is why we are in this problematic situation. The Delhi wicket is a good batting surface. We played Chennai Super Kings in the IPL Qualifier 1, so we know it is a good batting track which suits us,” Wright said on Tuesday.

Dwayne Smith with his 47-ball 63 against Lions showed why he is one of the best in this format with Kieron Pollard also chipping in with an unbeaten 32. Sachin Tendulkar will bring the crowds to stands with many hoping to see him recreate his old magic. At the top of the order, Tendulkar will have to ensure a positive start for the team.

Skipper Rohit Sharma along with Dinesh Karthik binds the middle order and the two need to weave partnerships like they did during the IPL.

Their bowling comprises some of the best in the world. Mitchell Johnson has the ability to run through any opposition, with the spin-pair of Harbhajan Singh and Pragyan Ojha completing a balanced unit.

The Scorchers, in the absence of their key players, have made little impact in tournament. The two huge defeats at the hands of Otago Volts and Rajasthan Royals arrested their progress. Mumbai offers them an opportunity to play against the game’s big stars and the Australians will be looking to get the maximum out of it.

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