The Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) will take on the Mumbai Indians (MI) in Match 14 of TATA IPL 2022. Though it will be an important game for both teams, MI will seek a win more desperately since they have faced two consecutive defeats and are yet to open their account.
Led by Shreyas Iyer this season, KKR are riding high on their unit’s performance as a group. If one was to analyze their two wins of the season, they would notice that both the games saw uplifting acts from different individuals.
KKR were too reliant on Andre Russell in the past 2-3 editions of the IPL, which seems to be changing with a regrouped squad. Even their only loss till now was a close contest, where they almost defended a low score.
On the other hand, MI are yet to taste success in IPL 2022. They have lost the first two games quite comprehensively. The men in blue are the perennial slow-starters of the Indian Premier League and have a habit of pulling things back in the second half of the tournament.
KKR Previous Match
In their second game this season, the Knight Riders took on the Punjab Kings at the Wankhede Stadium. Shreyas Iyer won the toss and asked PBKS to bat first. KKR’s bowling was a mixed bag in the powerplay as they conceded over 60 runs while taking 3 wickets.
Nevertheless, their bowling unit pulled things back in the middle phase and brought the opposition down to 102-7 in the 15th over. The Kolkata bowlers restricted PBKS to 137 with 10 balls to spare in the innings.
The star of their bowling lineup was Umesh Yadav, who took 4 wickets in his quota of overs, giving away only 23 runs. He was ably supported by the likes of Sunil Narine and Varun Chakravarthy. The most expensive bowler for KKR was Shivam Mavi. The speedster gave 39 runs in 2 overs while taking a wicket.
KKR’s opening with the bat was also below par as most of the batters looked in a hurry and lost their wickets to poor shot selection. At one stage, KKR were 51-4 after 7 overs, and the fear of losing the game was right next door for them.
However, a cautious yet stormy innings from Andre Russell proved enough for PBKS as their total was chased down in the 15th over. The big West Indian scored 70 off 31 balls, hitting 8 mammoth sixes and two fours.
Worries for KKR
- Their top order has consistently looked to over-attack. Even a calm customer like Shreyas Iyer is trying to create unnecessary havoc in the middle. He has got out to a poor shot twice in the last two games.
- Venkatesh Iyer is yet to fire: Considered the find of the last season, Venkatesh is looking uncomfortable at the crease, being unable to even connect the ball properly. He probably needs to clear his head before getting on to bat against MI.
- Rahane has switched off again for KKR. The opener scored a solid 40 odd runs in the first game against CSK. However, Rahane has not been able to touch the figure of 15 in the subsequent matches.
- Shivam Mavi is going for runs: The Knight Riders need to look after the young Mavi as he cannot find the right rhythm. A good pep talk might help.
MI Previous Match
The Mumbai Indians played their previous match against the Rajasthan Royals, and despite being near the target, they lost it by 23 runs in the end.
Rohit Sharma had won the toss at the DY Patil Stadium against RR and chose to bowl first, not knowing what was in the offing. Jos Buttler and Sanju Samson thrashed the MI bowlers as the former brought up the first ton of the season.
Though Mumbai did pull things back in the later stages, the men in blue couldn’t stop RR from scoring 193-8 in 20 overs. Jasprit Bumrah picked three wickets and gave only 17 runs to become the best bowler of the night for MI.
Chasing a massive total, MI had a poor start as their skipper, Rohit Sharma, got out cheaply for 10 runs. In another setback, they lost Anmolpreet Singh early as well. However, an 81 run stand between the young Ishan Kishan and Tilak Varma kept their hopes alive. Both the left-handers scored half-centuries in the game.
The rest of the work was to be done by biggies like Kieron Pollard and Tim David. However, Pollard was having a tough night as he struggled to middle the ball. Because of his low outing, MI lost from a winnable position. Pollard ended up with a score of 22 in 24 balls, averse to his natural strike rate.
He is very much capable of scoring 45 in 24 balls (that would have won MI the match), but the big man had a forgettable day in the center. MI lost by 23 runs, leaving a lot for the management to think about.
Worries for MI
- Poor bowling performance: In both their matches till now, MI have given away runs in abundance. Against the Delhi Capitals, MI couldn’t defend a decent total of 179 runs, and against RR, they were robbed of 193 runs.
- Lack of Execution: MI need to execute their plans to reap successful results.
Top 5 Predictions
- Rohit Sharma will find his form: The MI skipper has usually been inconsistent in the IPL, but he rises to the occasion when the team badly needs his services. Moreover, he was unlucky to get out in the previous game as a well-timed shot went straight to the point fielder.
- Venkatesh Iyer will score 30+: The youngster from KKR is under immense pressure from all corners. However, I feel this is just a lean phase, and something is stuck in his head. Once that shred of self-doubt leaves him, he will be at it again. In my opinion, Venkatesh will be among the runs for KKR against MI.
- Mumbai will have a poor start: Ishan Kishan will get out early, jolting the MI hopes.
- Varun Chakravarthy will take 2 or more wickets.
- Umesh Yadav will go for over 30 runs.
Predicted Playing XIs
- Ajinkya Rahane
- V. Iyer
- Shreyas Iyer
- Nitish Rana
- Sheldon Jackson (WK)
- Andre Russell
- Sunil Narine
- V. Chakravarthy
- Tim Southee
- Umesh Yadav
- Pat Cummins
- Rohit Sharma
- Ishan Kishan (WK)
- Suryakumar Yadav
- Tilak Varma
- Kieron Pollard
- Tim David
- Daniel Sams
- Murugan Ashwin
- Tymal Mills
- Jaydev Unadkat