IPL 2013: Pune Warriors vs Mumbai Indians – Live IPL Score
When teams vying for higher rewards battle teams which have nothing to lose, sparks fly, just like those EPL matches where one team eyes a Champions League berth and the other looks to avoid relegation.
The match between yet-to-be-champions Mumbai Indians and wooden spooners Pune Warriors at Gahunje on Saturday is one such. Thankfully for Mumbai, there is no relegation system here and so Pune won’t be that motivated. Mumbai coach John Wright said, “We know we have got players who can win matches.”
Mumbai’s firepower guarantees them the ‘favourites’ tag, especially with a last-four berth at stake. “There are no easy teams. We have to respect every team. If you don’t, it can lead to big trouble,” said Wright before the two-hour practice session on Friday.
“We had a very good last week. We just have to carry that away from home and play well here. It’s an afternoon game and the wicket will be different. We have some problems to solve. We have been good in Mumbai but these are different conditions. We are happy with the way Sachin Tendulkar played the last game, not necessarily because of the runs he scored but the way he played. He is going to be very helpful in slow-wicket conditions.”
Though Mumbai have won just two away games this season, they will feel at home at Gahunje, where many fans from across the ghat are likely to visit. This is not new for Pune, who played a ‘home’ match at DY Patil stadium against Mumbai two seasons ago.
Pune have batted first only once in six home games this season, posting 99-9 against Kings XI Punjab. “If we start well with bat or ball, that will help us,” said Wright. Pune have scored some unexpected wins over three seasons but never at the business end of the league. To pull it off against Mumbai will require a special effort from them, or a ‘Pune-like’ effort from Mumbai!