Gautam Gambhir has opined that the four-time IPL winning franchise Mumbai Indians might edge past the three-time winners CSK in the opening fixture of the competition. He also expressed his excitement to watch Jasprit Bumrah bowl in tandem with Trent Boult on Saturday while addressing CSK's issues.
While both sides were dealt with blows ahead of the IPL opener, Mumbai will go into the contest more confident than the Men in Yellow. Despite MI’s top wicket-taker Lasith Malinga missing the tournament, the franchise have plenty of bowlers in the squad to replace the veteran, including Kiwi pacer Trent Boult.
The left-arm seamer might very well be slotted into the playing XI on Saturday in the season opener against CSK. Alongside that, the franchise has also strengthened their top-order weakness, with the inclusion of Australian batsman Chris Lynn. All of this has made Gautam Gambhir feel that Mumbai Indians might edge the three-time winner CSK in the opening fixture of the competition.
For the first time in the competition, the duo of Boult and Bumrah would be opening the bowling for Mumbai, which has already made them favourites among the fans.
“I am really excited to watch how Trent Boult and Jasprit Bumrah will bowl with the new ball, because we all know Bumrah and Boult are world-class bowlers, and in the T20 format both are wicket-taking options,” Gambhir added.
“A left-arm seamer, who will bring the ball inside for a right-hand batsman while Jasprit Bumrah believes in an unorthodox style of bowling.”
In contrast, CSK would walk into the encounter without Suresh Raina and Harbhajan Singh, with no replacements named for the duo yet. Reports suggested that Raina would be replaced by 23-year-old Ruturaj Gaikwad, who hasn’t yet recovered completely from COVID-19. It is yet unclear whether the franchise would opt for Murali Vijay- Shane Watson opening combination with Ambati Rayudu at No.3.
“There will be a challenge for Chennai Super Kings considering they do not have Suresh Raina batting at No 3. Shane Watson has not played international cricket for a long time, so we would want to know who will open with him and how will these batsmen face these bowlers,” the former Kolkata Knight Riders skipper said.
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