Delhi Capitals failed to hold off the inevitability of yet another CSK vs MI final as the Dhoni-led Chennai Super Kings romped home by 6 wickets in the second qualifier at the Vizag. Delhi Capitals, batting first after losing the toss, could only manage a modest 147 with the highest contribution from Rishabh Pant. Chasing the target, Chennai Super Kings found a little resistance from their opponents and complete the target with one over to spare.
Now, Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians are set to fight for the glory at the Rajiv Gandhi International stadium in Hyderabad. This will be the fourth occasion in the history of the Indian Premier League when Chennai Super Kings will lock horn with Mumbai Indians for the scintillating prize. While Mumbai Indians has many star performers who helped their way to the final, Chennai Super Kings has been largely dependent on MS Dhoni. Except for a few performances from other batsmen, Dhoni has been the kingpin for CSK when it comes to batting.
In the big final, it is tough to predict the winner. It is a game of nerves and there is no doubt that both teams know to defy such circumstances.
In this article, we talk about the three reasons why Mumbai Indians can come on top of Chennai Super Kings in the final of IPL 2019.
#1 Good batsmen against spin bowling
Besides Dhoni's brilliance with the bat, one thing that has been effective for CSK is their spin bowling unit. The troika of Harbhajan Singh, Imran Tahir, and Ravindra Jadeja has been troubling the opposition batsmen with their skilful bowling. These three have played a huge part in CSK's way to the final, picking up 55 wickets among them. Mumbai Indians possesses a batting unit that is excellent at playing spin. Likes of Rohit Sharma, Surya Kumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, and Keiron Pollard are capable to hit the spinners out of the park. In this case, the bulk of CSK's bowling effort will struggle and MI can put a foot ahead in the intense competition.
#2 Great death bowling
A strong finish in death overs has been the batting formula for CSK. Amidst an average show from other batsmen, Dhoni has been taking them to the safe totals more often than not. Generally, they have started slowly in the power-play but Dhoni's pyrotechnics in the slog overs has helped them finish their innings on a high.
Mumbai Indians probably has the best bowling attack for those overs, Jasprit Bumrah and Lasith Malinga, the two of the best bowlers to ever play the game. In the first qualifier, Bumrah displayed his skills against Dhoni and kept him in check. Bumrah's variations were good enough to curb CSK's hopes of a strong finish.
Now, CSK, who have been largely dependent on Dhoni's blitz towards the end of the innings, will find it difficult to trounce Mumbai Indians, in case Bumrah and Malinga find their rhythm.
#3 Psychological factor
Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians have had three meetings at the final of IPL. In 2010, Chennai had beaten Mumbai Indians, while in 2013 and 2015, MI had got the better of CSK. So, Mumbai Indians are leading the race in finals. Moreover, Rohit Sharma, current captain of Mumbai Indians, has never lost a final against MS Dhoni. Rohit Sharma has emerged as victorious against Dhoni three times: twice against CSK (2013 & 2015) and once against Rising Pune Supergiants in 2017.
Head to head records between both sides is also in favor of Mumbai Indians. It means Rohit Sharma has been the guy to get into the supermind of Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Though CSK has qualified for the playoffs every time they featured in the tournament, their success rate is not that impressive, winning the tournament only three times in nine attempts. This thing will surely have a psychological effect on the mindset of players.
In such crunch games, when emotions are high, these psychological edges surely matters and Mumbai Indians should feel high going into the finals.