The IPL 2020 opening game between Mumbai Indians (MI) & Chennai Super Kings (CSK) is just a few hours away. But the suspense about Josh Hazlewood & Sam Curran’s availability is exactly the same as it was 15 days back.
Both of them landed in Dubai from Manchester on Thursday. Will they be allowed to participate in the opening game of CSK or not ?
Not even in the playing XI – but will they even be allowed to pass through the Emirate of Abu Dhabi from Dubai today evening along with the CSK team ?
All of these questions still stay unanswered.
The news from the Chennai Super Kings camp is – Dwayne Bravo, Imran Tahir and Mitchell Santner had completed six days after their arrival in UAE after taking part in the CPL and are eligible for Saturday’s game.
But both Hazlewood & Curran who arrived on Thursday in Dubai will be missing out in the opening game. Hazlewood and Curran’s participation is unlikely for the opener in because of Abu Dhabi’s strict quarantine protocols. If the first game would have been in Dubai, they could have played. But as the first game is in Abu Dhabi, they will be missing out of the CSK Line up.
Meanwhile, Ruturaj Gaikwad had tested negative in one COVID-19 test but another one remains. Then, there would be a cardiovascular assessment. This means even they will miss out from the playing eleven.
MI vs CSK Live : Check what CSK coach Stephan Fleming said about the game
“It’s one of the challenges of having to travel to Abu Dhabi, we’ve got to have to be very good on the day to have to assess the wicket and pick the right combination. One of the big challenges for IPL teams is to get the combinations right. I must admit, going to Abu Dhabi without seeing the wicket or assessing the conditions is going to be one of the big challenges to start with”.
Chennai Super Kings Likely Playing 11 for the Opening Game
Chennai Super Kings
1. Shane Watson, 2. Faf Du Plessis, 3. Ambati Rayudu, 4. MS Dhoni, 5. Kedar Jadhav, 6. Ravindra Jadeja, 7. Dwayne Bravo, 8. Shardul Thakur, 9. Piyush Chawla, 10. Deepak Chahar, 11. Imran Tahir / Lungi Ngidi
The only decision they are yet to make is whether to go in with Ngidi or Imran Tahir.
IPL 2020 MI vs CSK Live : News from the Mumbai Indians Camp
Unlike CSK, Mumbai Indians isn’t jittery about presence of any cricketer at this stage. They are sitting pretty, they have seen the wicket, they are based out and practicing out of Abu Dhabi only and they are the defending champions.
The only question they face is – Do they have horses for courses ? They have world class seamers like Jasprit Bumrah, Trent Boult, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Mitchell McClenaghan in the squad – but do they have quality spinners.
They had selected their team according to the conditions in India – will the same attack work in UAE ? This will be the only handicap for Mumbai Indians on UAE’s slow and dry wickets. Beside Krunal Pandya and Rahul Chahar, they will have to depend on the talented unknowns — left-arm spinner Anukul Roy and leg-spinner Prince Balwant Rai.
But all in all they will start favorites for the tie against CSK.
Mumbai Indians Likely Playing 11 for the Opening Game vs CSK
1. Rohit Sharma, 2. Quinton de Kock, 3. Surya Kumar Yadav, 4. Ishan Kishan, 5. Hardik Pandya, 6. Krunal Pandya, 7. Nathan Coulter-Nile, 8. Kierron Pollard, 9. Rahul Chahar, 10. Trent Boult, 11. Jasprit Bumrah