The Pune Warriors will face Mumbai Indians in their first match of this years IPL on Friday, April 6, and will look to start off on a good note after a disastrous introduction to the IPL last year. They will be under the leadership of the charismatic Dada Sourav Ganguly this year and will look to turn a new leaf although they will face a tough prospect in Mumbai.
Mumbai who tamed defending Champions Chennai in the opening match will look to continue in the same way. They were brilliant in the field inflicting run outs and holding their catches. Pragyan Ojha and Pollard choked the Chennai innings in the middle overs and will look to do the same to Pune. Richard Levi in his first match was a revelation at the top of the order and Pune will be wary of him. The only major concern will be the recovery of Sachin Tendulkar who suffered a blow on the finger trying to negotiate a Doug Bollinger short ball.
Sourav Ganguly will have a few things to think about as he is without star player Yuvraj Singh and his major overseas players like Michael Clarke and Angelo Matthews who are playing a Test match in Sri Lanka. Tamim Iqbal who was in superb form in the Asia Cup will be hard to overlook. Robin Uthappa too will look to perform better this year after a disappointing last season.
Overall Mumbai look good to maintain their position at the top of the table however when Dada is in the house you cannot count Pune off just yet. It should be a fascinating encounter in Mumbai.
Key Players- Mumbai- Richard Levi, Lasith Malinga, Kieron Pollard
Pune- Robin Uthappa, Rahul Sharma, Tamim Iqbal
Teams-Mumbai(probable)- 1 Sachin Tendulkar, 2 Richard Levi, 3 Rohit Sharma, 4 Ambati Rayudu, 5 James Franklin, 6 Kieron Pollard, 7 Dinesh Karthik(wk), 8 Harbhajan Singh(c), 9 Lasith Malinga, 10 Abu Nechim Ahmed, 11 Pragyan Ojha
Pune(probable)- 1 Sourav Ganguly(C), 2 Tamim Iqbal, 3 Robin Uthappa(wk), 4 Jesse Ryder, 5 Manish Pandey, 6 Nathan McCullum, 7 Wayne Parnell , 8 Rahul Sharma, 9 Ali Murtaza, 10 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 11 Ashok Dinda