Only two teams in Indian Premier League (IPL) history have won the title two times in a row. While one of those teams -- Chennai Super Kings-- has already reached the summit clash, the Mumbai Indians (MI) will face Gujarat Titans (GT) on Friday in Qualifier 2 of the IPL 2023.
Gujarat Titans' hunt to reach the summit clash now heads to Ahmedabad, where they will face Rohit Sharma's Mumbai Indians on Friday. The top team from the league stage didn't exactly play like it against Chennai Super Kings, and it now appears like they aren't fully certain of their best XI. Getting that wrong during the playoffs is generally costly.
Titans have proven bowling performances, including the season's top two wicket-takers. However, the Titans' batting, at least for the time being, lacks the clarity that their bowling does. They must determine whether Dasun Shanaka's offer is sufficient. Also, do more to ensure that Vijay Shankar bats when he has the biggest influence. Most importantly, they must find a way for Hardik Pandya, the batter, to make the best use of his abilities.
Titans' incredible run of form this season hit a little speed breaker in Chennai, but they return home with the hope of turning things around. So far in the tournament, they have faced Mumbai Indians twice, home and away, with the honours being shared.
Titans have been in stellar form with the bat barring the last match, especially Shubman Gill, who is within touching distance of the Orange Cap for this edition. Rashid Khan and Mohammad Shami have accounted for over 50 wickets between themselves, while Noor Ahmad and Mohit Sharma have been equally pivotal in the bowling attack, especially in the middle overs.
Mumbai Indians registered a thumping win against Lucknow Super Giants in Chennai to book their berth in Qualifier 2. Their batting department has been in good form and in the last couple of matches, they have bowled well in the slog overs. There was good cricket on display when we faced them on two occasions this year and one can expect a good game of cricket.
Mumbai Indians, on the other hand, are peaking at the appropriate time. They had one of their most comprehensive performances in the Eliminator, in addition to four wins in their last five group stage games. From a batting standpoint, everyone has unlocked their most dangerous form, while among bowlers, Piyush Chawla and Jason Behrendorff are doing enough for Akash Madhwal to flourish at the finish.
Gujarat Titans Squad: Wriddhiman Saha(w), Shubman Gill, Hardik Pandya(c), Vijay Shankar, David Miller, Dasun Shanaka, Rahul Tewatia, Rashid Khan, Darshan Nalkande, Noor Ahmad, Mohammed Shami, Mohit Sharma, Sai Sudharsan, Srikar Bharat, Jayant Yadav, Shivam Mavi, Joshua Little, Pradeep Sangwan, Matthew Wade, Abhinav Manohar, Odean Smith, Alzarri Joseph, Ravisrinivasan Sai Kishore, Urvil Patel and Yash Dayal.
Mumbai Indians Squad: Ishan Kishan(w), Rohit Sharma(c), Cameron Green, Suryakumar Yadav, Tilak Varma, Tim David, Chris Jordan, Hrithik Shokeen, Piyush Chawla, Akash Madhwal, Jason Behrendorff, Nehal Wadhera, Vishnu Vinod, Ramandeep Singh, Sandeep Warrier, Kumar Kartikeya, Riley Meredith, Shams Mulani, Arjun Tendulkar, Duan Jansen, Arshad Khan, Tristan Stubbs, Dewald Brevis and Raghav Goyal. (ANI)