Victorious in their last outing, Mumbai next take on Bangalore at the Dubai International Stadium in UAE on Monday, September 28.
Mumbai enjoy a tremendous 16-9 win-loss record against Kohli and his men and will be eyeing a win that will see them go level on points with Rajasthan and Delhi at the top of the points table. Here's everything you need to know about the fixture.
Pandya's peculiar record against Bangalore
Hardik Pandya is one of the cleanest hitters of a cricket ball and is known for going extremely hard at the opposition. But the all-rounder particularly enjoys playing against Bangalore. Here are his numbers against Bangalore compared to the other players who have done well against Virat Kohli and his side.
|Player||Match||Innings||NO||Runs||High Score||Balls||Strike Rate|
Among batsmen with at least a minimum of 100 balls faced, Pandya has the second-best strike rate of any batsman against Bangalore. Their bowling at the death has forever been a concern for the team and Pandya could yet again expose that weak spot on Monday.
Virat's weakness against southpaw speedsters
While it’s hard to identify a loophole in Kohli's batting technique, there seems to be a pattern developing in his dismissals. In his first two matches, Kohli has been dismissed while trying a pull shot against Thangarasu Natarajan and Sheldon Cottrell, two left-arm speedsters. Here’s his record against left-hand pacers and right-hand pacers in Indian T20 League since 2018.
|Pacers||Innings||Runs Scored||Batting Balls||Bowler Wicket||Avg.||SR|
His numbers are clearly much worse against left-arm pacers and in his next match, he'll come up against one of the best southpaw speedsters on the planet in Trent Boult. Could the New Zealander add to a growing trend or will Kohli weather the storm?
Players to watch out:
Mumbai – Krunal Pandya
Averaging over 200 runs and 10+ wickets each season, Krunal Pandya is an extremely dependable all-rounder for Mumbai . The left-arm spinner is particularly important against BAN owing to his stellar record against AB de Villiers. Pandya has dismissed de Villiers four times in the Indian T20 League. With BAN so heavily reliant on de Villiers, if Pandya were to work his magic a fifth time, it would help Mumbai greatly in their quest for a win.
Bangalore – Aaron Finch
BAN opener Aaron Finch needs to perform better at the top of the order for his side. The Australian white-ball cricket team captain has scored 49 runs in his first two outings with the bat this season, but with BAN's middle-order packing no power or consistency outside of de Villiers, BAN are heavily reliant on their top order to give them a good total on the board. A match against his former employers might be the chip on the shoulder that Finch needed but he needs to hit form and do it quick.
Stats to watch out for:
1: Rohit Sharma needs just one six to complete 150 for Mumbai. So far, only Kieron Pollard has reached that mark for MUM in the Indian T20 League.
2: Veteran speedster Umesh Yadav is just two scalps away from reaching 150 career T20 wickets.
10: Rohit Sharma needs just 10 more runs to complete 5000 runs in the Indian T20 League. He will become the third man after Suresh Raina and Virat Kohli to reach the mark.
47: Saurabh Tiwary needs 47 runs to complete 3000 runs in his T20 career.
85: Virat Kohli needs 85 runs to reach 9000 runs in T20 cricket. He would become the first Indian batsman to reach that mark.
Mumbai simply have too much juice in all three departments and nothing short of a miraculous performance from Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers or Yuzvendra Chahal is going to help them emerge victorious in this contest. Expect an easy Mumbai victory on Monday.
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Feature image courtesy: AFP / Indranil Mukherjee