Mumbai face Punjab in the first of the pre-quarterfinals here on Monday. Mumbai, having qualified for the knockout stage, by virtue of finishing second in the West Zone, will start as favourites in the match against a team that finished second in the North North Zone league.
Mumbai, who boast of a strong all-round side, will be led by India discard Wasim Jaffer and have a well-balanced side. Punjab, meanwhile, will bank on the form of Ravi Inder Singh, who got three fifties in the league stages. The batsman, who has scored over 30 runs at an average of 56.4, was unlucky to miss out on a ton in the first round when he was out for just 98.
Left-handed Karan Goel is the other batsman who is in good touch, having scored at an average of over 61, which in fact is bloated because of his innings of unbeaten hundred. Punjab’s bowling will be led by Jaskaran Singh, who has 14 wickets, the most in the league stage.
For Mumbai, batting has been a bit of a worry. Wasim Jaffer leads the pack with 209 runs at over 52, an average reached because of one significant score of 109.
In another match, Uttar Pradesh will face West Zone toppers Saurashtra.
Today’s matches: Mumbai vs Punjab in Ahmedabad, Saurashtra vs Uttar Pradesh in Baroda.