Star Wars: Kieron Pollard v Sunil Narine

Trinidadian heavyweights Kieron Pollard and Sunil Narine go head to head as Mumbai Indians takes on the Kolkata Knight Riders in the second Qualifier, at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru.

Both the Caribbean cricketers are known for their immediate impact, and neither would want the other to be in the limelight.

Kieron Pollard hasn’t sailed in a sea of runs. His medium-pace doesn’t terrorise batsmen. The orange and purple caps, he has never won. But he impacts — with an impossible catch, a few mighty blows or with a surprise wicket or two. And, he impacts at the right time — he was instrumental in winning the finals for the team in 2013 and 2015. For this reason, he is valuable for Mumbai Indians. For this reason, he has been retained in the squad year after year. For this reason, MI would hope he comes good tonight.

Trying to stop him would be fellow Trinidadian Sunil Narine. Of course, he hasn’t matched the lofty standards he set in the previous editions, he is only fifth in KKR’s top wicket-takers, but Narine’s off-spin is still not easy to score off. A middle-overs battle between the two, if it happens, will make for interesting viewing.

And, going by this season’s numbers, it wouldn’t be absurd to assume that Narine will outperform Pollard with the bat if he can’t stop him with the ball.

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