At the same venue where Sachin Tendulkar and MS Dhoni, together, lifted the World Cup trophy, they’ll be back again on Friday but this time to clash with each other in a different tournament, playing for different teams, and in a different format.
However, the fact that they’ll be around – regardless of the task on hand – makes the Mumbai Indians versus Chennai Super Kings clash at the Wankhede Stadium on Friday evening a much anticipated contest. In fact, considering that Mumbai lost to Chennai in the final of the 2010 edition, this might go on to be a grudge game for the hosts too.
Both captains are unlikely to make any changes to their respective squads. Therefore, the focus will once again be on the fact that Mumbai Indians haven’t really been tested in the tournament so far other than that shocker of a defeat to Kochi Tuskers Kerala and Chennai Super Kings have a lot to sort out as far as their bowling attack goes.
For Chennai, their pacers Tim Southee and Albie Morkel have been blowing hot and cold but it is the complete lack of any action from their spinners that should be worrying.
R Ashwin in particular has not been able to match up to Chennai’s expectations. Even Shadab Jakati, the left-arm-spinner, who has starred in previous campaigns, has proved to be listless so far.
Ashwin says that until the play-offs are over and the knockouts begin, it will be difficult to assess teams simply because all the 10 sides currently look exciting. “In that sense, we have the ability to try and achieve what we did in the last three years,” he says.
So, right now the lack of sting in Chennai’s attack doesn’t seem to be bothering Ashwin too much.
“There is a lot more to come. I owe a lot to Dhoni who has shown a lot of confidence in my abilities and I hope I continue to deliver according to expectations,” he says.
As of now, Ashwin is preparing to bowl at Sachin Tendulkar on Friday.
“There is not much I can do bowling against Sachin, but I will do whatever I can to the best of my ability,” he says, looking forward to the context.
Mumbai is bound to be star-struck once again when the two captains take field.