Royals to struggle against in-form champions

Match 20 of the 2020 Dream11 Indian Premier League sees the reigning and defending champions the Mumbai Indians, who are looking to claim their fourth win from six, take on the Rajasthan Royals. The Royals will be hoping that Ben Stokes will be available for selection, after he arrived in the UAE on Saturday.

Playing like champions

The Mumbai Indians put in a champion like performance on Sunday as they beat the Sunrisers Hyderabad by 37 runs, in a comprehensive victory. Mumbai batted first and two things happened that have been rare so far for them; captain Rohit Sharma didn’t get any runs, and Quinton de Kock finally found some form with a emphatic 67. As we have seen many times so far this year in the IPL, the Mumbai middle order propelled their good start in to a bumper score with Kishan (31), H Pandya (28) and Pollard (25*) clearing the ropes. Krunal Pandya finished the job off and got them over the 200 mark with 20* from just four balls at a strike rate of an astronomical 500.

With the ball, it was the same faces getting the job done for Mumbai with the opening pair of Trent Boult (4-0-28-2) and James Pattinson (4-0-29-2) showing their class at the start and end of the innings. The left arm angle of Boult and his range of slower balls ensured Mumbai got over the line with some excellent death bowling, along with Jasprit Bumrah who also picked up two wickets.

The one thing that Mumbai have failed to do this year is to win back to back matches, this is something they will be keen to do in this one, and set the pace at the top of the table.

Time to stop the rot

After a very good start with two wins from their first two games, the Rajasthan Royals have struggled to find a winning formula since. Jos Buttler hasn’t brought the fireworks that we are used to seeing from him, and his early dismissal is the reason that the Royals were 31-3 when setting a score against RCB. They fought their way to 154 but it was always going to be a tough total to defend against a strong batting side.

Captain Steve Smith will be delighted to have Ben Stokes back in his armoury for the rest of the tournament. It was questioned whether Stokes would be able to fulfil his contract after spending time back home in New Zealand with is family, but he arrived in the UAE at the weekend to start his period of quarantine. It is not yet known if Stokes will be allowed to play in this one, but if he is, he will likely take the place of fellow Englishman Tom Curran.

Match Tip

Despite their poor form, if any of Buttler, Smith or Samson hit top gear in the first six, there will be a lot of runs. And even though they aren’t favourites to win the match, they could easily get off to an explosive start.

I am backing the Rajasthan Royals to score more runs in the powerplay than the Mumbai Indians at 1.85 with LeoVegas.

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