Battle for the play-off spots hots up as Mumbai Indians and Sunrisers Hyderabad lock horns in Game 62 of this season of Indian Premier League at the Wankhede Stadium on Monday. The Rohit-Sharma led side is placed second on the league table, having won nine out of 13 matches. Hyderabad, on the other hand, have eight victories in 13 games and need a win here to make life a bit difficult for Mumbai, Rajasthan Royals and Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Fresh from a solid win against neighbours Pune, Mumbai will hope to continue their winning run at their home ground. Their openers haven't fired in consistently in most of the games and even against the weaker Pune attack, they lost Dwayne Smith for a duck. Sachin Tendulkar has failed to convert his starts into big scores. But Dinesh Karthik and Rohit Sharma have consistently performed for their side and have played a few match-winning knocks as well. Allrounder Kieron Pollard, who missed the last match due to injury, is expected to come back at the expense of Glenn Maxwell. Ambati Rayudu will also be hoping to get among the runs.
The bowling attack, comprising pacers Mitchell Johnson (19 wickets) and Lasith Malinga (11 wickets), has been formidable. Johnson, by his own admission, has been in the form of his life and has been the key bowler for the Mumbai outfit. The pace duo has been well supported by Harbhajan Singh and Pragyan Ojha, who have been choking up the runs and also taking wickets in the middle overs.
On the other hand, Hyderabad need a win on Monday to stay in hunt for the play-off spot. Hyderabad's batting has been criticised throughout the tournament but off late few of their batsmen have chipped in with runs. Shikhar Dhawan, Parthiv Patel, Darren Sammy and Thisara Perera have made a meaningful contributions. Patel scored his first half-century in three years in the team's previous game against Kings XI Punjab. The four foreigners rule certainly seems to be hurting them, as Hyderabad have been changing their captain with either Sri Lankan Kumar Sangakkara or Aussie Cameron White.
Hyderabad may not boast of a star-studded line up but have a lethal bowling attack comprising world's fastest bowler Dale Steyn and Ishant Sharma along with crafty legspinner Amit Mishra. With both sides in good form, expect a thriller of a contest.
Mumbai Indians: Dwayne Smith, Sachin Tendulkar, Dinesh Kartihk, Rohit Sharma (c), Ambati Rayudu, Kieron Pollard, Harbhajan Singh, Mitchell Jhonson, Lasith Malinga, Pragyan Ojha, Dhawal Kulkarni
Sunrisers Hyderabad: Parthiv Patel, Shikhar Dhawan, Hanuma Vihari, Cameron White/Kumar Sangakkara (c), Thisara Perera, Darren Sammy, Biplab Samantray, Karan Sharma, Amit Mishra, Dale Steyn, Ishant Sharma