Sunday’s double-header will see the teams from Mumbai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Gujarat in action. MI v SRH and KKR v GL are important games – as we head towards the business end of the tournament, a slip-up on Sunday could make the difference between qualification for the playoffs and watching from the sidelines.
Match Tip #37: MI v SRH
The teams: Mumbai Indians (MI) v Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH). SRH are coming off the back of a convincing victory over GL. The inclusion of Kane Williamson and the return of both Yuvraj Singh and Ashish Nehra should ease the burden on David Warner and Mustafizur Rahman. With both GL and DD faltering in the last couple of games, expect SRH to push hard to make it the top 4. MI on the other hand, played their last game a week ago and will be hoping that they can maintain their winning momentum.
The Venue: Dr. Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakapatnam. This is the first game being player at this ground and previously India has played two T20s here – in 2012 and more recently in 2016 where India bowled Sri Lanka out for 82 with Indian spinners picking up 8 out of the 10 wickets. Expect this track to turn!
Our picks for your fantasy cricket team
Mustafizur Rahman – “The Fizz” is becoming quite a force to reckon with in the cricketing world. Almost a year after he burst onto the scene, he is still foxing top quality international batsman. Even though the previous games suggest a spinning wicket, Fizz’s intelligent cutters and quick yorkers will be dangerous.
Rohit Sharma – To put it simply, Rohit Sharma has kept MI alive in the IPL. As we get closer to the playoffs, MI remain heavily dependent on Rohit to push them into the top 4. His innings of 85 off 60 in the last game helped MI crush RPS by 8 wickets and MI will be hoping for more of the same from the Hitman.
Kieron Pollard – MI’s secret weapon. He bides his time and explodes at just the right time. His last innings against KKR was a match-winning 51 off just 17 balls. Although he bats at number 6, MI’s misfiring batting order means that Pollard should get to play a bigger role. And don’t forget, he is pretty useful with the ball and is a safe pair of hands in the field. Admittedly a bit of a risk, the day Pollard comes off, you could leap-frog the
loserPretender sitting on top of your fantasy cricket league.
Match Tip #38: KKR v GL
The Teams: Gujarat Lions (GL) v Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). After reigning at the top of the table for a couple of weeks, Raina’s GL appear to have lost their edge. Having clocked 3 losses in a row, GL have handed the top spot to the brilliant KKR, who have been from the front by Gambhir. An interesting stat from IPL 2016 – the top 4 run scorers are all captains of their side; Kohli, Gambhir, Warner and Rohit. Raina will be hoping to join that list soon but to start with he will be focused on dismissing the dangerous Gambhir early in the piece.
The Venue: Eden Gardens, Kolkata. Expect a track with runs for the batsmen and potentially some help for the seamers. Having picked up 4-20 in his last outing, Andre Russell would love to bowl here again.
Our picks for your fantasy cricket team:
Robin Uthappa – Although Captain Gambhir has been KKR’s standout performer this year, Uthappa has played some excellent knocks and is a proven match-winner. His ability against the fast ball might mean Raina has to think outside the box, and consider bringing on the likes of Shivil Kaushik early.
Dwayne Bravo – Dwayne Bravo has had a reasonably quiet IPL 2016 if you compare it to his past performances for CSK. Against a formidable KKR top order, Raina will rely on him to stem the flow of runs and pick up critical wickets. With a top order failing to lay a launch platform in the last couple of games, Bravo may be called on to pitch in with the bat too. Don’t take this Champion lightly!
Shivil Kaushik – Our *wildcard* pick for this game, Shivil Kaushik bowled beautifully in the last game against SRH. The batsman struggled to pick him and he beat the bat often. Once you get past his unusual action, this boy has some real talent and incredible control.
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Please do read our post on the key overseas players in each team after the auction, which should give you some food for though! And sign up with OyeCaptain for free to pick your team for the games and win cash prizes!
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(Original cover artwork by Ishita Mohanty. She tweets here.)