Searching for its first win after four straight defeats, Mumbai Indians face an uphill task when it takes on Punjab Kings at the MCA Cricket Stadium in Pune on Wednesday.
MI has not been able to seize the opportunities in the first four games. An area of concern has been the batting unit that has not clicked collectively, especially during the middle phase of the game after the PowerPlay.
Skipper Rohit Sharma has not fired so far and needs a big score to lay the foundation. A possible solution to its middle-order woes will be to have Suryakumar Yadav, who has slammed back-to-back half-centuries, play one position higher at number three.
The team’s bowling has not fired in unison. And pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah has lacked support. One of the overseas pacers needs to step up.
Meanwhile, its opponents Punjab Kings have had a mixed start to the tournament with two wins and as many defeats from four games.
The Mayank Agarwal-led side will walk into this game post a heartbreaking defeat to Gujarat Titans after failing to defend 12 off the last two balls. The team has an explosive batting line-up and has shown willingness to take on the bowlers through the innings.
Along with Kagiso Rabada, in-form leg-spinner Rahul Chahar will hold the key as far as bowling goes. He can pick wickets during the middle overs and exploit MI's vulnerabilities.