Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders come face-to-face again when they clash in Qualifier 2 of the 2017 Indian Premier League (IPL) on Friday. (IPL 2017 FULL COVERAGE)
Ahead of the match, here is a look at the two teams’ biggest strengths.
Consistency: The twice former champions have lost thrice to Rising Pune Supergiant in IPL 10, including twice in the league stage, but MI have just four defeats in 14 ties, which reflects their consistency. They lost just two out of seven away matches, which straightaway put them ahead at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium for Qualifier 2.
Sheer depth: No team in IPL 10 boasts of the batting depth as MI does. They don’t depend on the top four alone to find scoring momentum. Hardik Pandya and Krunal Pandya are capable of stepping it up if Parthiv Patel, Kieron Pollard, Lendl Simmons or skipper Rohit Sharma slip up.
Clearly ahead: Mumbai Indians seem to know how to dismantle KKR time and again. Rohit Sharma’s side boast of a 15-5 win-loss record, a number which is hard to ignore. This season, Mumbai have won both their matches against Gautam Gambhir’s side, including the win at the Eden Gardens.
Kolkata Knight Riders
On familiar turf: Early in IPL 10, Gautam Gambhir’s side upstaged hosts Royal Challengers Bangalore at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium. Having again come out on top at the venue in another high-profile clash, the former champions are well-placed.
Pulling as team: Team performances rather than one or two players shouldering the weight has worked for Kolkata Knight Riders. In batting, bowling, and as they showed on Wednesday in fielding and catching, each member chips in.
Flexible unit: Skipper Gautam Gambhir and the team management showed they are flexible, asking Chris Lynn and Robin Uthappa to open in the six-over shootout they won against Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Eliminator. Sunil Narine had been used as pinch-hitter until then. Same with leggie Piyush Chawla coming in for chinaman bowler, Kuldeep Yadav.