Steven Smith (L) and Kieron Pollard
Steven Smith (L) and Kieron Pollard

Preview:

Skipper Rohit Sharma's fitness would be a concern for defending champions Mumbai Indians as they aim to continue their dominant run, while a depleted Rajasthan Royals would hope to stay afloat when the two teams clash in an IPL match here on Sunday.

Mumbai roared back to form by crushing Chennai Super Kings by 10 wickets on Friday after their Super Over loss to the Kings XI Punjab. RR, on the other hand, lost to the Sunrisers Hyderabad by 8 wickets in their last game.

Table-toppers MI are on course to make it to the play-offs but the game is crucial for Rajasthan, who are languishing at seventh place and a loss would mean a step closer to elimination.

Questions remain on whether Rohit, who suffered a hamstring injury and missed the game against CSK, will be available on Sunday for MI.

But Rohit's absence was hardly felt on Friday as the young Ishan Kishan (261 runs) launched into CSK bowlers with gusto.

So did Quinton De Kock (368 runs), continuing his sublime run. In the event of Rohit missing out on Sunday as well, the two will open again.

Mumbai's middle-order has also been among runs -- be it Suryakumar Yadav (243 runs), Hardik Pandya (164 runs), swashbuckling West Indian all-rounder Kieron Pollard (208 runs) or Krunal Pandya (82 runs).

With their big-hitting ability, the Pandya brothers and Pollard are a threat to any opposition.

MI bowlers are also wreaking havoc, especially New Zealand left-arm pacer Trent Boult and Jasprit Bumrah, who are lethal upfront and in the death.

The two have accounted for 33 wickets, while Australian Nathan Coulter-Nile (2 wickets) has supported the duo.

Spinners Krunal (5 wickets) and Rahul Chahar (13 wickets) are equally aggressive in the middle overs and perform the dual task of containing and grabbing wickets with utmost ease.

For Rajasthan, the biggest worry is the form of skipper Steve Smith, who has made 265 runs from 11 matches and a misfiring top-order.

In the course of the season, Rajasthan have made constant changes at the top and that has hurt them badly.

The team does possess quality players like Ben Strokes (110 runs), Sanju Samson (272 runs) and Jos Buttler (271 runs), but the trio has failed to deliver collectively.

With two crucial points at stake, the management would be hoping that the three click on Sunday, something which has not happened this season.

All-rounder Rahul Tewatia (224 runs and 7 wickets) has been a revelation with both the bat and ball, but too much is being left for him to achieve.

Their younger players are also getting starts but need to convert them and take responsibility in case the seniors misfire again.

On the bowling front too, RR lack consistency.

Only Jofra Archer (15 wickets) has been effective with his pace but has failed to get support from fellow pacers Kartik Tyagi, Jaydev Unadkat and Ankit Rajpoot, who have 12 wickets combined. Spinner Shreyas Gopal has leaked 343 runs from 11 games.

With Tyagi giving away 42 runs against SRH, he could be replaced by Varun Aaron. Stokes as a bowler has been unimpressive as he has failed to get a single wicket so far.

Squads:

Mumbai Indians Squad: Quinton de Kock(w), Ishan Kishan, Saurabh Tiwary, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard(c), Krunal Pandya, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah, Rohit Sharma, Dhawal Kulkarni, James Pattinson, Aditya Tare, Mitchell McClenaghan, Chris Lynn, Jayant Yadav, Anmolpreet Singh, Anukul Roy, Mohsin Khan, Sherfane Rutherford, Digvijay Deshmukh, Prince Balwant Rai

Rajasthan Royals Squad: Robin Uthappa, Ben Stokes, Sanju Samson(w), Steven Smith(c), Jos Buttler, Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Ankit Rajpoot, Kartik Tyagi, Varun Aaron, Jaydev Unadkat, David Miller, Aniruddha Joshi, Manan Vohra, Tom Curran, Andrew Tye, Shashank Singh, Mahipal Lomror, Oshane Thomas, Mayank Markande, Anuj Rawat, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Akash Singh

Starting XI Prediction:

Rajasthan Royals: Ben Stokes, Robin Uthappa, Sanju Samson (Wk), Steven Smith (C), Jos Buttler, Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Ankit Rajpoot, Kartik Tyagi

Mumbai Indians: Quinton de Kock (Wk), Rohit Sharma/Saurabh Tiwary, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard (C), Krunal Pandya, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah

Rajasthan Royals vs Mumbai Indians Dream11 Picks:

Quinton de Kock (Wk), Rohit Sharma/Suryakumar Yadav, Sanju Samson, Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard (C), Krunal Pandya, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah

Toss: Mumbai Indians win the toss, opt to bat first!

Starting XI:

Rajasthan Royals: Robin Uthappa, Ben Stokes, Sanju Samson(Wk), Jos Buttler, Steven Smith(C), Riyan Parag, Rahul Tewatia, Jofra Archer, Shreyas Gopal, Ankit Rajpoot, Kartik Tyagi

Mumbai Indians: Quinton de Kock(Wk), Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Saurabh Tiwary, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard(C), Krunal Pandya, James Pattinson, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah

The game begins!

Ishan Kishan and de Kock are at the crease. Ishan Kishan is on strike. Jofra Archer will open the attack for RR!

Score after 5 overs: MI (45-1)

Score after 10 overs: MI (89-1)

Score after 15 overs: MI (116/4)

Score after 20 overs: MI (195/5), RR needs 196 to win!

The chase begins!

Uthappa and Stokes are at the crease. Uthappa is on strike. Boult will open the attack for MI!

Score after 5 overs: RR (45-2), needs 151 in 90 balls!

Score after 10 overs: RR (99-2), needs 97 in 60 balls!

Score after 15 overs: RR (157-2), needs 39 in 30 balls!

Rajasthan Royals defeat Mumbai Indians by 8 wickets!

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