Fans eagerly await the second half of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021, which will resume in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from 19 September. All the teams started preparations for the cash-rich league, including Mumbai Indians (MI), which Dubai reached early.
The five-time IPL champions started slowly in the first half, but managed to win matches in the final stages and are currently fourth on the points ladder. No wonder the reigning champions are looking for another IPL title this year.
Former India cricketer Gautam Gambhir expressed his support for the Rohit Sharma-led team as he reckons the circumstances will suit their style of play. Gambhir claimed that conditions in the UAE would be favorable for an MI tempo attack with Jasprit Bumrah and Trent Boult. The former Delhi cricketer noted that the courses in the Gulf will be very different from what fans see in Chepauk, and therefore the batting unit with stars like Rohit and Hardik Pandya, will shine.
‘They played in conditions that are completely different from where they normally play. If you see the conditions in Chepauk or Delhi, it is completely different from what you get at Wankhede. And as I mentioned, they go into conditions that are suitable for their fast bowling – people like Jasprit Bumrah, Trent Boult, “ say Gambhir Star Sports’ Show Game plan.
‘There will be swings beforehand, so it will be very dangerous. On top of that, Mumbai wants balls to swing, and you have fast bowlers of high quality, and that will be an advantage for them. “On top of that, their batsmen want the balls to come to the bat as well, people like Rohit Sharma, Hardik Pandya, all the guys struggled at Chepauk because it was gripping and spinning,” he added.
Gambhir felt that MI, unlike the first half of the tournament, could not afford to start slow because then it would be very difficult for them to qualify for the last four.
“They are not going to struggle if they start playing in Dubai or Abu Dhabi. So, that’s why I would think that Mumbai Indians would have an advantage; they can no longer afford a slow starter because they have seven games to play, and they may have to win 5 games to qualify, so they can not afford to be in that situation, where they have five out of five must win, ‘ Gambhir added further.