Mumbai Indians v Delhi Daredevils, IPL 2013, Mumbai April 8, 2013

Stumbling stars collide

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Match facts

Tuesday, April 9, 2013
Start time 2000 (1430 GMT)

Big Picture

The last time Ricky Ponting played at Wankhede Stadium, he was leading Australia in a one-dayer against India. There was no IPL yet. Ponting made a half-century, and one can imagine the kind of reception he must have got from the Mumbai crowd, which has a ready ability to heckle visiting teams and captains. More than five years later, when Ponting walks out to the toss on Tuesday night, you can be sure there'll be nothing hostile about the crowd's behaviour towards the Mumbai Indians captain. It'll be the franchise's first home game of the season, and Wankhede will know, and respect, what it is witnessing when Ponting and Sachin Tendulkar walk out together.

Not only will Mumbai be backed by the screaming hordes, they will also be lifted by the presence of their key bowler, Lasith Malinga, who is likely to be fit for his first match this season. Malinga should come in for one of Mitchell Johnson or Dwayne Smith.

Mumbai had a batting failure against Chennai Super Kings, and were hauled back from the edge of defeat by an acrobatic catch from Kieron Pollard, who had bailed them out with an unbeaten fifty earlier in the game.

Till the penultimate over against Rajasthan Royals, Delhi Daredevils were winning the game easily, David Warner having guided the chase sensibly. Then Warner was run out, and the rest choked. Daredevils have lost both matches so far, and will be hoping Virender Sehwag has recovered enough from his back troubles to play. Daredevils will also welcome back last season's highest wicket-taker, Morne Morkel, and the feisty Roelof van der Merwe, who will join the squad after playing in South Africa's domestic T20 final.

Players to watch

Sachin Tendulkar has received many shocking lbw decisions over his career. The one he got against Chennai Super Kings wasn't one of them, still, his reaction was about as livid as you'll ever see Tendulkar on the field. It is surprising the match referee did not have anything to say. That is a different matter, but Tendulkar's disgust showed his desperation to make runs. Has the presence of another legend at the other end made him even more determined?

Morne Morkel had 25 wickets last IPL season at just over seven runs an over. Indications are he will play, and if he does, the tall fast bowler should enjoy the bounce the Wankhede generally offers. Mumbai have had batting stutters in both matches so far, and facing Morkel will be a testing prospect.

Stats and trivia

  • Last year at Wankhede, Mumbai Indians were shot out for 92, with the Daredevils quick bowlers picking up seven wickets.
  • Kieron Pollard is eight short of 3500 T20 runs

Quotes

"T20 is a game of improvisation but you have to strike a balance between improvising and sticking to your own style. I want to balance it out even more so that it does not get too much one-sided."
Daredevils batsman Unmukt Chand

Abhishek Purohit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • dummy4fb on April 9, 2013, 14:28 GMT

    @Jimbond: exactly mate...thats what i also believe...look at the MI team composition...they hardly play any newcomer...they keep on playing Rohit Sharma even after repeated failures...look at players like Dhawal Kulkarni and Abu Nechim Ahmed...they deserve chances..but no MI will not let that happen.....during last IPL Dhawal Kulkarni showed some promise in the little opportunity he got..in IPL in Abu Nechim too bowled really well...but did not get the opportunity to play last year......if u remember the CLT20 in 2011 which was won by MI...Abu was the highest wicket taker in that series as far as I remember..but sad part is that these players are simply being wasted now :( also look at Rahul Sharma...last year he got to play only 1 match for MI..but see how things are going after changing the franchise...when will these teams understand that the sole objective of IPL is to give youngsters a platform to perform...all about giving them confidence....hope they realise this soo

  • Prans1997 on April 9, 2013, 14:18 GMT

    I desperately want to see sachin score today. He is one of the greatest ever players and I feel bad when he doesnt score

  • Shaurya_123 on April 9, 2013, 14:01 GMT

    People doesn't seem to remember Sehwag But I Can tell them to just wait for a few matches and the orange cap will be his so that he may answer the selectors and his critics for how they rate him now

  • KnightTemplar on April 9, 2013, 13:05 GMT

    My Playing XI- GOD, Rohit, DK, Pollard/Ponting/Rayadu (depending on Situation), Bhajji, Mitchell,Malinga, Oza, Munaf/Bumrah

  • EverybodylovesSachin on April 9, 2013, 12:33 GMT

    Sachin is a stroke player and when there is chance to hit the ball for runs he would still do it and that is how he got out in Chennai on first ball try to flick away on leg side and ball swung a bit and got LBW. Might have thin inside edge becasue of his rection to the decision but it was close. Hope to see to score some good runs today. Both the legends are under pressure to perform..

  • krishindian on April 9, 2013, 12:08 GMT

    well there should be 4 changes for mi one karthik opener no rohit and rayudu get young and hard hitters malinga in for smith and last get a good score if bat 1st

  • dummy4fb on April 9, 2013, 12:01 GMT

    my 11 will be blizzard, sachin, ponting, karthick, rsharma, pollard,raydu, h singh, ojha, malinga, kulkarni,

  • dummy4fb on April 9, 2013, 11:38 GMT

    Has the presence of another legend at the other end made him even more determined? It definitely is. Sachin takes a lot of pride in performance and it was obvious on that day. Batting along side Ponting, will only increase his motivation and hunger and it is same for Ponting. Hoping to see these two strike some form and would be a visual treat for the fans.

  • Cric_Info1987 on April 9, 2013, 9:59 GMT

    is malinga playing today ?