MI vs CSK Star Wars: Mustafizur Rahman vs Dwayne Bravo

Two special bowlers and limited-overs specialists...who will impact the contest between heavyweights more?

The Indian Premier League begins with lots of fanfare once again, signalling it is time for the those typical cameos — cavalier heroics with the bat and foxing bowling variations. Bangladesh’s Mustafizur Rahman (Mumbai Indians) and West Indies’ Dwayne Bravo (Chennai Super Kings), both masters in the nuances of limited-overs bowling, will begin new journeys with their new teams this season.

After having played a crucial role in Sunrisers Hyderabad’s title win in 2016, Mustafizur was forced to give the 2017 season a miss due to injury. Known for his cutters which famously baffled India’s batsmen in a limited-overs series in Bangladesh in 2015, Mustafizur has carved a niche for himself due to his unique skill-set. He was one of the highest wicket-takers in the 2016 IPL (17) and with a frugal economy rate of 6.90 to boot. Having been purchased for ₹2.20 crore by the three-time champion Mumbai Indians, the seamer would be raring to display his wares for perhaps yet another title.

Bravo, similarly, has also been instrumental in his team’s success in the past. He is a death-overs specialist replete with an arsenal of slower balls, cutters, seamers and other variations. Unlike Mustafizur, though, he is also handy with the bat. His Twenty20 experience — 375 matches — makes him a key personnel of the Chennai Super Kings set-up, a unit he has served for five seasons and returns to after its two-year hiatus.

In the contest between two heavyweights — three-time champions versus two-time champion — the two could have a considerable impact.