The eighth edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) is all set to witness another classic encounter between the fierce rivals – Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Mumbai Indians (MI). Both the sides are two of IPL’s most consistent sides and enjoy massive fan following. Why not? They have two of India’s biggest cricketing heroes representing them. While Indian limited-overs skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has been synonymous to the CSK unit since IPL’s inception in 2008, MI continues to cash-in Sachin Tendulkar’s popularity even after one and half years of his retirement. Tendulkar continues to be associated with the side, this time as a mentor.

 

Both the sides have met each other thrice in the playoff stage and on all three occasions, CSK have triumphed. This time around, with the game being played at Mumbai’s fortress – the Wankhede Stadium, they do begin with an advantage. CSK have by far been the best side in this year’s IPL as they qualified for the playoffs their eighth consecutive time, a feat that remains unmatched. However, Mumbai who were at the bottom after losing all their first four games marked a remarkable turnaround to finish at the second spot.

 

MI lost two of their key players – Aaron Finch and Corey Anderson due to injuries and in this crucial tie CSK will miss the service of New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum, who has been one of their star performers this season. Looking at the player against player comparison between the two sides, CSK stands out favourites for this clash. Their bowlers have performed better and they have changed games with their fielding. With McCullum away for national duty and with Suresh Raina in an indifferent form, Mumbai holds an edge in the batting department. Also with the game being played at Mumbai’s home ground, the support they will receive from the sea of blue at the stands will add to the opposition’s detrimental factor.

 

Ultimately it’s a matter of holding the nerves and the performance at the greens which will see one of these two fly to Kolkata for the final onMay 24.

Designed by Sunil Lavate
Designed by Sunil Lavate

 

 

(Suvajit Mustafi consumes cricket for lunch, fiction for dinner and munches numerous other snacks throughout the day. Yes, a jack of several trades , all Suvajit dreamt of was being India’s World Cup winning skipper but ended up being a sports writer, author, screenwriter, director, copywriter, graphic designer, sportsmarketer , strategist, entrepreneur,  philosopher and traveller. Donning so many hats, it’s cricket which gives him the ultimate high and where he finds solace. He can be followed at @RibsGully and rivu7)

 

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