Mumbai Indians are on the brink of elimination and will have to beat Rajasthan Royals on Tuesday in Sharjah, if they are to have any chance of making it to the playoffs. The defending champions are on a torrid run in the UAE which has seen them drop to seventh in the IPL points table. In what has been one of their worst IPL seasons, the Mumbai franchise have won just five matches, having played 12 games. Some big names have underperformed, and Rohit Sharma and the team management might have to take some tough calls to save their season.
Here are the players we think might be included in MI XI for their game against RR:
Rohit Sharma: Like some other stars in the team, captain Rohit Sharma too has failed to perform to his lofty standards this season. The MI skipper was dismissed for just seven in the previous game against DC but will need to make a big contribution in what is a must-win match.
Quinton de Kock: The South African has done relatively better than the rest but has failed to make his starts count on numerous occasions. Even in the last game, he got off to a good start before being dismissed by Axar Patel for 19.
Suryakumar Yadav: The stylish right-hander has had a tough time in the UAE but finally seemed to hit some perform in the previous match. He was the top-scorer for MI against DC, with his 26-ball 33 bringing some respectability to the total. MI will hope he returns to his absolute best on Tuesday.
Saurabh Tiwary: One of the bright sparks for MI in the UAE leg, the burly left-hander has made two decent contributions for MI in the four matches he has played this season. Though, he failed to fire against DC, Mumbai will hope that he is once again amongst the runs.
Hardik Pandya: Playing as an out-and-out batter, Hardik has failed to set the stage alight. Barring a 40 not out against Punjab Kings, the 27-year-old has managed scores of 3 and 17 in the two other matches he has played.
Kieron Pollard: The West Indian all-rounder has been a constant for MI over the years, but the UAE leg hasn’t been kind to him either. Barring a fine performance with both the bat and ball against PBKS, Pollard has not made a significant contribution.
Jimmy Neesham: The New Zealander has not got a sniff for MI in the UAE, and it might finally be time to give him an opportunity. Krunal Pandya has been woeful, and how long can MI keep persisting with him. Neesham is an able batter and a bowler.
Rahul Chahar: Having been dropped from the match against DC, Rahul Chahar could once again return to the playing XI. While he has not had the best of times, his replacement Jayant Yadav wasn’t much of an improvement either.
Dhawal Kulkarni: The veteran pacer might find some game time, if MI decide to make some changes. The only way he could be included in the playing XI, if MI decide to make sweeping changes. But his slower variations could work in his favour.
Trent Boult: The New Zealand pacer has taken five wickets from as many matches in the UAE leg. While he has not been at his absolute best, he still remains one of the best bowling options for Mumbai.
Jasprit Bumrah: The Indian pace bowling star has been the standout for MI in the UAE. The only MI player that has performed to his full potential, Bumrah has taken 11 wickets in just five matches.
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