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IPL 2020 Final: How Delhi can upset Mumbai

By HARISH KOTIAN
November 09, 2020 17:55 IST
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IMAGE: Delhi Capitals Head Coach Ricky Ponting and Captain Shreyas Iyer. Photograph: BCCI/IPL
 

Delhi Capitals know they have their task cut out when they take on favourites Mumbai Indians in the IPL final in Dubai on Tuesday, November 10.

Having made it to the IPL final for the first time, Delhi are up against Mumbai who have already beaten them thrice this season and look unstoppable in their quest for their fifth fifth IPL title.

Delhi began their IPL 2020 campaign with seven wins from their first nine games before they hit a roadblock with four successive losses.

Having made it to the playoffs they suffered a 57-run thrashing at Mumbai's hands in the first qualifier, but bounced back well with a 17 run win against Sunrisers Hyderabad in the second qualifier to make it to the title clash.

Delhi are high on confidence going into the final despite their poor recent record against Mumbai. They are certainly capable of upsetting Mumbai, with their world class bowling attack featuring Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje and Ravichandran Ashwin.

Shikhar Dhawan has shown he can win games on his own and Marcus Stoinis, as he showed on Sunday, is dangerous with both bat and ball.

Here's how Delhi can upset the mighty Mumbai Indians, explains Harish Kotian:

Early wickets are a top priority for Delhi

Ravichandran Ashwin

IMAGE: Delhi Capitals Off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin celebrates a wicket during the Qualifier 1 match against Mumbai Indians, November 5, 2020. Photograph: BCCI/IPL

Delhi's first and foremost target in the final would be to pick up early wickets.

Mumbai boasts of capable batsmen all the way till No 7, so Delhi know they need to strike early to put the champions under pressure.

Delhi should use spin to counter Mumbai's dangerous top order, especially opening batsman Quinton de Kock.

Ashwin has accounted for de Kock twice in three games and it would be a good ploy to bowl him with the new ball in the final.

Ashwin could take confidence from the fact that his best showing this IPL came against Mumbai in the Qualifier 1 match when he took 3-29 in four overs.

Overall, he has taken 13 wickets from 14 games, going at 7.7 runs per over.

Rabada, Nortje to counter Pollard-Pandya

IMAGE: Delhi Capitals's pace duo, Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje. Photograph: BCCI/IPL

Delhi's bowling attack got the taste of the Mumbai Indians's lower order brutal strokeplay in Qualifier 1 when Hardik Pandya (37 not out from 14 balls) and Ishan Kishan (55 not out from 30 balls) turned the innings on its head, smashing 55 runs from the last three overs.

Hardik and Krunal Pandya along with Ishan Kishan and Kieron Pollard are a major threat in the final few overs and Delhi would do well to use their fast bowlers Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje in the end overs to check their charge.

Kishan is the top six-hitter in the IPL so far with 29 sixes in 13 games. Hardik has hit 25 sixes, Pollard has hit 22 and de Kock 21.

One key decision for Delhi Captain Shreyas Iyer will be on how to use Rabada and Nortje, because he definitely needs a few of their overs at the end.

Rabada and Nortje, who have taken 49 wickets between them, suffered in their last encounter against Mumbai and would be itching for revenge.

The South Africans have some good weapons in their armoury including the yorker and a variety of slower balls which could make it difficult to take them on in the end overs.

Continue with Stoinis as opener

Marcus Stoinis

IMAGE: Delhi Capitals Opener Marcus Stoinis. Photograph: BCCI/IPL

In their last match against Mumbai Indians, Delhi's run chase all but ended in the second over.

Trent Boult claimed two wickets in the first over and Jasprit Bumrah picked another wicket in the next over as Delhi had lost their top order even before scoring a single run.

In the Eliminator match against Sunrisers Hyderabad, Delhi showed how if they get off to a start they are very had to stop.

The change to get Marcus Stoinis worked well for Delhi as the Australian hit 38 from 27 balls against Sunrisers, putting a quickfire stand of 86 for the opening wicket with Shikhar Dhawan.

Delhi must continue with the same openers, given that Prithvi Shaw and Ajinkya Rahane have struggled in that position.

Dhawan has been in smashing form in the tournament and hit 78 from 50 balls against Sunrisers to give Delhi the perfect start.

The left-hander has scored more than 600 runs in the tournament at a handsome strike rate of 145, with two centuries and four fifties.

He will need support at the other end, which Stoinis provided in the last game when he went on the attack early on.

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