Defending champions Mumbai will look to get their first win of the 2021 Indian T20 League campaign when they entertain Kolkata at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on Tuesday.

Mumbai’s record of losing the first game of an Indian T20 edition since 2012 continued with a two-wicket defeat to Bangalore. But going by their last two campaigns, Rohit Sharma and Co. are likely to dominate the ongoing edition of the high-profile league.

On the other hand, Kolkata won their first game against Hyderabad in a convincing manner. However, they step into the match against the five-time champions with caution.

Kolkata vs Mumbai full squads

Kolkata: Eoin Morgan (captain), Dinesh Karthik (wicket-keeper), Nitish Rana, Shubman Gill, Gurkeerat Singh, Rahul Tripathi, Kamlesh Nagarkoti, Kuldeep Yadav, Lockie Ferguson, Pat Cummins, Prasidh Krishna, Sandeep Warrier, Shivam Mavi, Varun Chakravarthy, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Tim Seifert (wicket-keeper), Shakib Al Hasan, Sheldon Jackson (wicket-keeper), Vaibhav Arora, Karun Nair, Harbhajan Singh, Ben Cutting, Pawan Negi, Venkatesh Iyer

Mumbai: Rohit Sharma (captain), Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Suryakumar Yadav, Quinton de Kock (wicket-keeper), Anmolpreet Singh, Aditya Tare, Chris Lynn, Saurabh Tiwary, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Kieron Pollard, Jayant Yadav, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohsin Khan, Rahul Chahar, Anukul Roy, Adam Milne, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Piyush Chawla, James Neesham, Marco Jansen, Yudhvir Charak, Arjun Tendulkar

Kolkata vs Mumbai probable XI prediction

Kolkata selected Shakib Al Hasan instead of their mainstay Sunil Narine in their opening game of the Indian T20 League 2021 season. Based on their performance against Hyderabad, the team management might likely stick with the same playing XI which means the West Indian all-rounder will sit out yet again.

Kolkata predicted XI: Shubman Gill, Nitish Rana, Rahul Tripathi, Eoin Morgan (captain), Dinesh Karthik (wicket-keeper), Andre Russell, Shakib Al Hasan, Pat Cummins, Harbhajan Singh, Prasidh Krishna, Varun Chakravarthy

Mumbai, meanwhile, are in dilemma with regards to their opening order. Quinton de Kock, who missed the first game as he was serving a mandatory seven-day period of quarantine, could replace Chris Lynn for the fixture against his former side. Besides this, one can hardly see Rohit Sharma making changes to his team, with the likes of Jimmy Neesham, Adam Milne, Nathan Coulter-Nile and Arjun Tendulkar on the bench.

Mumbai predicted XI: Rohit Sharma (captain), Chris Lynn / Quinton de Kock, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard, Krunal Pandya, Marco Jansen, Jayant Yadav, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah

Kolkata vs Mumbai head-to-head record in Indian T20 League

Two-time holders Mumbai have an explicit advantage over Kolkata, whether it be the head-to-head record (21 wins in 27 games) or the last five meetings (four wins in five matches).

Kolkata vs Mumbai head-to-head record
Kolkata Metrics Mumbai
27 Matches 27
6 Wins 21
22.22% Win Percentage 77.78%

Additionally, Rohit Sharma’s men also have bragging rights at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, where they command a win rate of 55.56 per cent as opposed to Kolkata’s 30 per cent. As far as results at Chepauk are concerned, Mumbai have won five games in nine while Kolkata have just three victories in 10 matches.

Kolkata vs Mumbai: Match result prediction

Mumbai is almost an untouchable team when it comes to their batting and bowling strengths, and they are predicted to win the match against Kolkata - based on the odds. While Eoin Morgan’s men average 18 fours and 7.8 sixes from their last five matches, Mumbai have registered 13 fours and 7.2 sixes on an average. Nonetheless, the defending champions are well-placed to pick up their first win of the season and add to their tally of 21 wins over the two-time winners.

Best performers in Kolkata vs Mumbai

Top tip: Best batsmen

Having failed to inspire Mumbai to a win in the season opener, Mumbai captain Rohit Sharma will be eager to continue his free-scoring record against Kolkata. The opener has amassed 939 runs in 27 games - averaging 46.95 and requires another 61 runs to become the first batsman to hit 1,000 runs against any Indian T20 League franchise. Considering the 33-year-old has hit 30-plus runs in four of the last five innings against Kolkata, it’s a no-brainer that one should bet on Rohit Sharma as the top batsman in this fixture.

In the case of Kolkata, Nitish Rana is the ideal candidate to be the leading run-scorer in the latest Kolkata vs Mumbai showdown. The 27-year-old hit a match-defining 80 at a strike rate of 142.85, and he will be eager to better his tally against Mumbai - 107 runs in five innings

Top tip: Best bowlers

Mumbai pacer Jasprit Bumrah now has 51 wickets in the death overs in the last five Indian T20 League seasons, a figure that reflects the threat he effectively poses to Kolkata’s middle and lower order. Mumbai will be eager to use Jasprit Bumrah to silence the domineering Andre Russell, given he has bowled 17 dots and scalped his wicket thrice in 34 balls bowled to the West Indian all-rounder. Russell, meanwhile, has scored 44 runs against the Mumbai pace spearhead.

For Kolkata, Pat Cummins could be the wrecker-in-chief. The Aussie speedster, who picked up 1/20 against Hyderabad on Sunday, will be keen to take on Mumbai skipper Rohit Sharma given he has bowled nine dots in 19 deliveries to the opener. Considering Rohit is aiming for a big celebration on Tuesday, one can safely put their stakes on Pat Cummins to spoil the party for the most successful captain in the Indian T20 League.

Top tip: All-rounders and wicket-keepers

The likes of Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard and Andre Russell are the options to be considered as the top all-rounder, but if statistics are concerned, the safe bet would be the flamboyant Hardik Pandya. The 27-year-old averages 71 against Kolkata, while bagging 11 wickets in nine games against them.

The likely return of Quinton de Kock means Mumbai will get a much-needed boost to their batting order. The South African has seven dismissals (six catches, one stumping) against Kolkata, which is better than Dinesh Karthik’s tally of five dismissals (all catches) against the five-time winners.

Feature image courtesy: AFP / DIBYANGSHU SARKAR