Five-time champions Mumbai Indians (MI) will take on the defending champions Gujarat Titans (GT) in the second qualifier in the IPL 2023 at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on May 26. The Rohit Sharma-led side dominated LSG in the eliminator to set up their game against GT and are now only two wins away from a record-extending sixth IPL title. MI have won one and lost one of their two prior games to GT this season.
In the league stage, MI beat DC, KKR, RCB, PBKS, GT, and RR once and beat SRH on both occasions. They lost to RCB, PBKS, GT and LSG once and were second best to CSK in both matches but bounced back strongly in the end to make the top four.
The batters have been the stars for MI this season and have helped the team win even after poor performances from the bowling unit, but In the eliminator the bowlers finally turned up and dominated the LSG batters to hand MI a crushing win. Impactful attacking cameos from Cameron Green (41 off 23), Suryakumar Yadav (33 off 20), Tilak Varma (26 off 22) and Impact Player Nehal Wadhera (23 off 12) propelled Mumbai Indians to a competitive 182/8. Akash Madhwal then took the centre stage with a lethal spell of 5/5 in 3.3 overs to rip through LSG’s batting order as the Krunal Pandya-led side succumbed under pressure and were bundled out for a measly 101 runs with 21 balls of the innings remaining as Mumbai won by 81 runs.
Suryakumar Yadav is the top-scorer for the team with 544 runs so far this season at an astonishing strike rate of 183. He has scored one century and four half-centuries so far this season. Tilak Varma has so far scored 300 runs at a strike rate of 154, and finally returned to the team against LSG after recovering from an injury. Ishan Kishan has been in good form this season and has scored 454 runs so far. Skipper Rohit Sharma has scored 324 runs so far this season but has endured another season riddled with inconsistencies. Cameron Green has scored 422 runs at a strike rate of 161 in his maiden IPL season. Both Tim David and Nehal Wadhera have also chipped in with over 200 runs so far.
The MI bowlers were in destructive mood against a strong LSG batting line-up and MI might have found another gem in Akash Madhwal. Chris Jordan has picked up 3 wickets in five games at an economy of ten and is mainly in the team due to his excellent death bowling skills. Behrendorff is expected to be the other overseas bowler in the line-up. He has picked up 14 wickets so far. Riley Meredith has also chipped in with 7 wickets this season.
Piyush Chawla has been the surprise package for MI so far this season. The veteran spinner is the top wicket-taker for the side with 21 wickets so far at an economy of 7. Cameron Green has chipped in with 6 wickets. Arshad Khan, Hrithik Shokeen and Kumar Kartikeya have chipped in with 13 wickets between them so far. Akash Madhwal has now scalped 14 in his debut season after the fifer against LSG. Kartikeya is expected to replace Shokeen in the line-up for the second qualifier. Vishnu Vinod, Nehal Wadhera, Arjun Tendulkar, Hrithik Shokeen or Sandeep Warrier could be Impact player options for MI.
MI’s predicted XI vs GT in IPL 2023:
Openers: Rohit Sharma (c), Ishan Kishan (wk).
Middle Order: Suryakumar Yadav, Tilak Varma, Tim David.
All-rounders: Cameron Green.
Bowlers: Chris Jordan, Jason Behrendorff, Piyush Chawla, Kumar Kartikeya, Akash Madhwal.
Impact Player: MI will rely on Vishnu Vinod, Nehal Wadhera, Arjun Tendulkar, Hrithik Shokeen or Sandeep Warrier for their Impact Player options.