SRH have made some off-beat calls of late, and the same have worked out brilliantly. Bringing in Wriddhiman Saha ahead of Jonny Bairstow has proved to be masterstroke as the veteran wicket-keeper has taken the pressure off skipper David Warner with some excellent hitting. The decision to include quality all-rounder Jason Holder has strengthened both SRH’s batting and bowling.
Medium pacer Sandeep Sharma has been impressively consistent with his performances. Further, T Natarajan has carried on with his great work while leg-spinner Rashid Khan has completely lived up to his reputation. Things though will need to fall together for them against a strong Mumbai line-up.
The defending champs have long qualified for the play-offs. Quinton de Kock, Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, stand-in skipper Kieron Pollard and Hardik Pandya have all passed with flying colours in the task assigned to them. Remember, they have been achieving these brilliant results of late even without their regular skipper Rohit Sharma.
One of the major factors behind the aura around Mumbai has been their superior bowling attack. Trent Boult and Jasprit Bumrah have been sensational at the top of the innings as well as at the death. Leggie Rahul Chahar has silently gone about doing his business. The only thing they need to figure out is who will be the third pacer -- James Pattinson or Nathan Coulter-Nile.
Head-to-Head Record: Mumbai have an 8-7 lead over SRH from 15 games. They beat Hyderabad by 34 runs in the last match between the two teams.
MI Predicted XI: Quinton De Kock, Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Saurabh Tiwary, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Nathan Coulter Nile, James Pattinson, Rahul Chahar, Dhawal Kulkarni
SRH Predicted XI: David Warner, Wriddhiman Saha, Manish Pandey, Kane Williamson, Jason Holder, Abhishek Sharma, Abdul Samad, Rashid Khan, Shahbaz Nadeem, Sandeep Sharma, T Natarajan
The pitch at Sharjah has got slower. Dew too has come into play. Chasing should be the preferred option.
The temperatures are falling and will be in the low 30s to high 20s.