Kings XI Punjab need to win all the rest of their matches in the league stage and hope for favourable results from the other matches that teams like Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kolkata Knight Riders play to have any chance of making it into the playoffs this year.
Sitting comfortably on top of the points table Mumbai Indians will face Kings XI Punjab at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai. Mumbai Indians have two games in hand and have lost just three from their 12 matches. The Wankhede is literally their fortress and to breach that KXIP has to play out of their skin.
Kings XI Punjab is desperate to win their remaining matches to stay in contention for the playoffs. The last time these two sides met, Mumbai thrashed Kings XI Punjab by eight wickets, chasing 198 in just 16 overs.
Mumbai Indians lost their last match against Sunrisers Hyderabad by seven wickets but still remain at top of the table. Mumbai failed to score a challenging total against the Sunrisers as they were restricted to 138 for seven. Hyderabad bowlers live up to the expectations by bowling in right areas and kept taking wickets at regular intervals to ensure that Mumbai batsmen do not settle down till the end overs. Punjab will look to the same and the likes of Sandeep Sharma, Mohit Sharma will have to bowl in right areas to restrict the MI batsman.
Mumbai Indians were not impressive in their batting department as they only managed to score 138. So they have to focus on their batting. Skipper Rohit Sharma, Nitish Rana, Parthiv Patel, West Indian Kieron Pollard need to fire once more.
Punjab will be without Hashim Amla as she has returned home for national duties.This is a big blow for KXIP and hence the time has come for Glenn Maxwell and Shaun Marsh to score big and help the team. Kings XI Punjab’s Shaun Marsh has scored more runs against Mumbai Indians than against any other IPL team.
Sandeep Sharma has gobbled up a few big names in the last couple of matches; his last five scalps are Aaron Finch, Suresh Raina, AB de Villiers, Virat Kohli and Chris Gayle. Can he continue that trend and also include Rohit Sharma to that list? This will definitely be the most interesting battle to watch out for.
Kiwi pacer Mitchell McClenghan, Lasith Malinga and Jasprit Bumrah along with the Pandya brothers will also be the ones to watch out for.