Published: Sun, May 21, 2017
Industry | By Dora Warner

Two-time champions Mumbai Indians have a point to prove against Pune

The Rohit Sharma led Mumbai have been the outstanding team this IPL, with 10 wins from 14 matches. The season started with an early wobble for Pune when they lost three in a bounce after an opening win but the team quickly bounced back to register a string of victories that eventually carried them to their first qualifier and subsequently the final.

"They have been playing some really good cricket and it's just that we haven't been playing too well on those days". I say "bunny" because Mumbai Indians who topped the points table have not won against RPS this season and the two teams have locked horns three times.

The skipper of Rising Pune Supergiant is going to be Steve Smith but it will be Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni who will be up against each other in a different contest. Additionally, there were the contributions of young Indian players such as Nitish Rana and Karn Sharma that got them through.

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MS has always relished a final encounter be it the ICC T20, 50-over World Cup, Champions trophy but importantly in the context of the IPL - the former Indian captain has featured in most IPL finals - seven including this year's clash with Mumbai Indians. Smith will be captaining the side in finals for the first time.

While Supergiant will head into the tie with a psychological edge, Mumbai will be relying on their match-winners to help them create history on Sunday.

Despite rusty starts, by his own standards, Dhoni has served reminders - if needed - thrice during the business-end of this IPL season that he is a force to reckon with. We have the same team from the last game.

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While Mumbai Indians - just on the basis of man-to-man comparisons - may have a bit of an upper hand against RPS, Dhoni's presence in the lineup can make the Pune side an emotional favourite for a majority of fans. If all those things be looked after, results will take care of itself.

Pandya brothers - Krunal and Hardik - provide the all- round balance and above all there is Rohit, who can singlehandedly turn the match on its head.

Manoj Tiwary, M.S. Dhoni (wk), Daniel Christian, Washington Sundar, Lockie Ferguson, Shardul Thakur, Jaydev Unadkat, Adam Zampa.

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Mumbai's batting may have fluctuated this season, but they have made it count, especially when setting totals. Mumbai Indian team may include Lasith Malinga, Jasprit Bumrah, and Johnson for their fast bowling squad.

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