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The Preview by Devashish Fuloria
April 28, 2012
Match factsSunday, April 29, Mumbai
After a demoralising sequence of five straight losses, Deccan Chargers finally got their first win of the season with a strong performance against Pune Warriors. They will take the momentum to Mumbai where they face a battered Mumbai Indians side. They had lost to Mumbai Indians in Visakhapatnam - a game that should have been closed out by Chargers.
Chargers have faced a number of problems. Their batting line-up has been inconsistent, making three 150-plus totals and three sub-140 scores. One reason for that has been the failure of their captain Kumar Sangakkara and Daniel Christian, big name players who should be their pillars. Sangakkara has 83 runs from five games at less than run a ball and Christian has lost his place to Cameron White. That Chargers have posted high totals is largely due to the Shikhar Dhawan's 224 runs in the tournament. While their batting has misfired, their bowling has been unable to defend good totals. Apart from Dale Steyn and Amit Mishra, the others have been taken for easy runs. But in the previous game, Juan Theron replaced Steyn in a surprising move and grabbed two wickets. Another addition to the team was 21-year old Ashish Reddy, who made his debut. Reddy bowled his four overs for 32 and picked up two wickets. He consistently bowled a foot outside the off stump, which helped Sangakkara set his fields.
Mumbai Indians are back at Wankhede and will look to regroup quickly. They have now lost three of their last four games. They tried a new opening batsman in Delhi - their sixth different opening combination in eight matches, but that move didn't work as Aiden Blizzard was out for a duck. They also came to know on Saturday that Australia fast bowler Mitchell Johnson will not be available this season due to a toe injury. The team needs some good news, and a match against the bottom-placed team at home presents them the opportunity.
Form guide(most recent first)
Mumbai Indians: LWLLW
Deccan Chargers : WNrLLL (Nr - no result)
Players to watch
If Ambati Rayudu's last two innings are any indication, he will be hard to stop. Rayudu scored a 17-ball 32 against in Mohali and bettered it with a 39-ball 62 against Delhi Daredevils. The Delhi innings kept Mumbai on track for three-quarters of their chase, even after they lost several heavyweights at the top of the order.
Kumar Sangakkara needs to step up after a disappointing run so far. If the burden of defeat was affecting his batting, it would have lifted a bit after the win against Warriors. Against Mumbai Indians, Sangakkara will have to take the lead in tackling Malinga, like Mahela Jayawardene did.
Stats and trivia
Quotes"He's been getting off to starts and playing reasonably well in the last couple of knocks, but he backed himself fully today and showed what he can really do."
"I have got to lift my performance for myself and the team. I haven't been bowling well, the last two-three matches, I have gone for runs."
Harbhajan Singh has just one wicket in eight matches
Devashish Fuloria is a sub-editor with ESPNcricinfoFeeds: Devashish Fuloria
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