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51st Match (N), Brabourne, May 06, 2022, Indian Premier League
(20 ov, T:178) 172/5

Mumbai won by 5 runs


Mumbai Indians look to put bowling woes aside against Gujarat Titans

For Titans, it will be about how they gather themselves back after a batting failure

S Sudarshanan

Big picture

It's a game between two streak-broken sides.
Gujarat Titans had won five games on the trot to have eight wins out of nine before they lost to Punjab Kings. Mumbai Indians began with eight straight defeats before finally turning a page with a win over Rajasthan Royals.
While much of the spotlight has been on Mumbai's batting failures, here's the thing: in six of their games, Mumbai have had at least one over where they conceded 20 or more runs - the joint-most such games along with Chennai Super Kings and Royals. They have had eight such overs in the season so far, the joint-most with Royals.
And that's indeed something that hasn't missed head coach Mahela Jayawardene's keen eyes. "If you take four-five games, we have bowled well for 18 overs and we've had two big overs," he said on Thursday. "We are one of those teams that has given 20-plus [runs] overs pretty much in every game and that has cost us at least four to five games. We need to make sure that you don't go for big 20-plus overs, even though we may get hit."
The opponents have been smart to see off Jasprit Bumrah and target the other bowlers. This is evident from Bumrah's economy rate of 6.87 since the first match (where he went for 43 in 3.2 overs) in return for just five wickets.
For Titans, it will be about how they gather themselves back after a batting failure. Shubman Gill and Hardik Pandya have both failed together in the last few games, which has hampered the side. Having started the tournament on a stellar note, Pandya would want to put in a match-winning performance against his former team.

In the news

B Sai Sudharsan had landed awkwardly on his ankle while fielding in Titans' last game and walked off the field. If he misses out, either Abhinav Manohar or Vijay Shankar could take his spot in the XI.

Likely XIs

Gujarat Titans: 1 Shubman Gill, 2 Wriddhiman Saha (wk), 3 B Sai Sudharsan, 4 Hardik Pandya (capt), 5 David Miller, 6 Rahul Tewatia, 7 Rashid Khan, 8 Alzarri Joseph, 9 Lockie Ferguson, 10 Mohammed Shami, 11 Pradeep Sangwan/Yash Dayal
Mumbai Indians: 1 Rohit Sharma (capt), 2 Ishan Kishan (wk), 3 Suryakumar Yadav, 4 Tilak Varma, 5 Kieron Pollard, 6 Tim David 7 Daniel Sams, 8 Hrithik Shokeen, 9 Jasprit Bumrah, 10 Kumar Kartikeya, 11 Riley Meredith

Strategy punt

  • Rashid has dismissed Rohit Sharma twice in five innings. On the other hand, Rohit has a favourable match-up against Lockie Ferguson - a strike rate of 230 across all T20s without being dismissed. Titans could throw Rashid early in the mix to extend Rohit's misery with the bat.
  • On the contrary, Rashid doesn't have great numbers against Tim David. David has hit him for 36 runs off 19 balls without getting out. While Suryakumar Yadav has scored only 32 runs off 28 balls against Rashid, the legspinner is yet to dismiss him as well. Together David and Suryakumar could neutralise the Rashid threat.
  • Three of Bumrah's five wickets this season have been left-handers. Three of the Titans top six are left-handers and it could well be a chance for Bumrah to add a few to his tally. He has dismissed Rahul Tewatia once in two meetings but is yet to dislodge David Miller in seven innings.

Stats that matter

  • Mumbai have bowled 40.3 overs of spin in this season so far, the second-fewest after Sunrisers Hyderabad.
  • Bumrah has gone wicketless in six out of the nine games so far. He did worse only in 2014 when he was wicketless for seven games out of the first nine.
  • Titans' average opening partnership has been 22 runs. Only Kolkata Knight Riders (14.40) have done worse this season.
  • Mohammed Shami had just one wicket in four games against Mumbai Indians till IPL 2018. Since 2019, he has 11 in six meetings against them.

S Sudarshanan is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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