Delhi Daredevils v Mumbai Indians, IPL 2013, Delhi April 20, 2013

Mumbai in search of ideal batting formula

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Match facts

April 21, 2013
Start time 1600 (1030 GMT)

Big Picture

Delhi Daredevils are still without a win in IPL 2013. They've played six games, managed to tie one, but have zero points. Their confidence would have taken a particularly brutal beating in their previous game, against Chennai Super Kings, when they were shot out for 83 - the lowest total so far this IPL - while chasing 170. They have ten games to go in the group stages; they are not yet ruled out of the playoffs, but to progress they'll have to win as much as possible and then hope other results go in their favour.

The only losing margin bigger than Daredevils' 86-run defeat this season was Mumbai Indians' 87-run loss a day before to Rajasthan Royals. Mumbai are widely accepted as a favourite to win the tournament with their line-up of stars - both local and overseas - but they are yet to get their batting working at optimal level. Apart from the failure of the Tendulkar-Ponting combine, they have not had enough batsmen contributing. While Dinesh Karthik has been in contention for the orange cap all through and Rohit Sharma has played a couple of big innings, the rest of the batsmen have not touched an aggregate of 100 in five games. Kieron Pollard, who is third on their run-charts with 95, has batted too low too often. Do they persist with the old hands at the top? Do they push Kieron Pollard up to No. 4? Questions they'll have to address, ahead of the Daredevils game.

Form guide

Delhi Daredevils LLLLL (most recent first)
Mumbai Indian LWWWL

Players to watch

David Warner has had a tough time of late. As he tweeted on Thursday, he has "not had much luck in India" - after losing the India-Australia Tests 0-4, he is now 0-6 down with Delhi Daredevils. And the frustration seems to be showing. After Sunrisers' Cameron White had edged the ball into his grille and Warner had extracted it last week, Warner appealed - albeit in jest - for a catch. In Daredevils' previous game, Warner had appealed - this time in all seriousness - for an obstructing the field decision against MS Dhoni. His batting has fallen away too, with scores of 1, 15 and 0 following two half-centuries in Daredevils' first three games. If he is able to channel his frustration into aggression with the bat on Sunday, it could spell trouble for Mumbai.

Will Ricky Ponting open at the Feroz Shah Kotla? Will he even play? Tendulkar has not been in the best of touch either, but knocked off 44 off 29 against Pune Warriors. Ponting, on the other hand, has shown no such hint of coming into form; he has scores of 28, 6, 0, 14, and 4, and he has taken 75 balls to score those 52 runs. Still, most of his team-mates have been all praise for his captaincy. It all adds up to a tough choice for Ponting. After the loss to Royals, he said: "We will think about changing the team a bit." A reshuffle on the cards then? Or will Ponting do a Sangakkara and drop himself? That could open up a slot for Glenn Maxwell, Mumbai's million-dollar recruit who five games into the season is still warming the bench.

Stats and Trivia

  • Delhi Daredevils have lost eight IPL games in a row. If they lose to Mumbai Indians, they will move to joint-second (with Kolkata Knight Riders and Kings XI Punjab) on the list of longest losing streaks in the IPL. Pune Warriors top the list with 11
  • Kieron Pollard is four catches short of 100 T20 catches. When he gets there, he'll be only the second player to do so behind David Hussey

Quotes

"Barring a couple of games we haven't got a good start yet, but they are the kind of players we all know can produce results and I am sure they will deliver."
Dinesh Karthik on Mumbai Indians' openers

"I know the team has many players of proven quality and others who have immense talent and hunger to succeed at this level and higher."
Viv Richards, who has taken an advisory role with Delhi Daredevils

Nikita Bastian is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Affan1984 on April 21, 2013, 10:23 GMT

    I want to see Maxwell in action but I don't want to see Ponting in the dug out. So, it is must for Ponting to perform with bat now. Also, he needs to come at 3 rather than opening. He is no doubt of the finest captain in the history of cricket. He should be in playing 11 no matter what. @BCCI: Please increase the quota of foreign players to at least 5. 4 is too less.

  • Prabhash1985 on April 21, 2013, 10:21 GMT

    I'm a DD fan, because of Mahela, but I must say DD batting is pathetic! I cannot believe why the hell David Warner wanted to hit boundaries from ball one, when chasing just 170. He acted as if it's a 220 chase. You need to understand this. Every time you are challenged with a high score, you lose! Why? Not because you cannot score that, but because you become nervous. Mahela himself is such a player, who gets nervous at crucial moments and sacrifice the wicket after a rash shot. I want to see good cricket from DD. This is not Test cricket! This is just 20/20. You can bounce back at anytime. But you must do it before it's too late. So much disappointed!

  • die_hard_fan_of_delhi on April 21, 2013, 10:18 GMT

    finally perfect pick from jayawardne .let us see what will happen for DD. 5 bats men 3 all rounders and 3 bowlers good choice. he can pick even powerful DD team.

  • dummy4fb on April 21, 2013, 9:39 GMT

    What happened of glenn maxwell...million rupees player?? when will he play and after an impressive debut Jasprit Bumrah...3-32 should play in place of Rishi Dhawan...Glenn Maxwell can only play in place of Ricky Ponting... because Pollard Johnson and malinga are playing well at their spots..

  • BRUTALANALYST on April 21, 2013, 9:35 GMT

    D Smit or Pollard has to open with Sachin I really liked D Smth and Sachin at the end of last yr last time they played they won by 10 wickets chasing 160 was a complementary opening pair. I'd say same this yr if M.I want to win Smith or Ponting need to open but when they play Steyn or other top bowler make Sachi 1 so don't lose wicket straight away as Sachin is experienced and has technique to deal with opening mover then all hell can be let loose on other openers form Smith/Pollard if they get out early doesn't matter so much cos tail is so long at M.I.l

  • Hook_Shot on April 21, 2013, 9:33 GMT

    MI are losing because the oldies won't retire. It's a open and shut case!

  • dummy4fb on April 21, 2013, 9:31 GMT

    11 in batting order for MI most likely to succeed for MI - Ponting, Malinga, Karthik, Rohith, Pollard, Rayudu, Dhawan, Johnson, Harbhajan, Sachin, Ojha Leave Ponting at the top for now - at least he runs the other guy's singles. For the kind of results Sachin provides, in terms of batting - I don't think there is too much difference between Sachin & Malinga. At least Malinga will be a man, swing his bat & hit the balls he can sight (clearly more than what Sachin does). His reputation adds to the problems for MI - opposition bowlers feel pepped up when getting SRT's wicket (which is wierd, considering that SRT has been telling the world through his performance that Sachin Can't bat). At least, Malinga's wicket will have no such encouraging effect on opposition bowners. If MI have to carry Sachin, at least park him where he can do minimum damage to MI.

  • Nehans on April 21, 2013, 9:26 GMT

    Pointing is the one who should be sitting out in order to give Maxwell a chance, its unfair to Johnson, Malinga or Pollard to have a game off in order to accomodate Pointing, in case Pointing insists to play then he should bat at number 4 as Pointing& tandulkar are doing more harm than good to the team by batting and wasting overs in the powerplay

  • dummy4fb on April 21, 2013, 9:22 GMT

    enough said MI Winning XI (as per batting order)1 Tendulkar 2 Rayudu 3 D Karthik 4 R Sharma 5 Pollard 6 D Smith 7 Harbhajan 8 Johnson 9 Ojha 10 MM Patel / Bumrah 11 Malinga

    DD Winning XI (hopefully) 1 Sehwag 2 Warner 3 Juneja 4 Jayawardene 5 N Ojha 6 K Jadhav 7 Van der merve 8 I Pathan 9 A Agarkar 10 Nadeem 11 Morkel

  • gramedgar on April 21, 2013, 9:18 GMT

    Pondulkar is the epitome of something that looks great on paper but doesn't have any real merit.