If you have to pick two star-studded line-ups from the IPL, two teams that will immediately come to your mind will be Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Mumbai Indians (MI). Even the Indian contingent of these two teams mostly includes the international players.
Because of the fact that a huge chunk of KKR’s and MI’s squads has got the international experience, these two teams are the strongest favorites to lift the IPL trophy this season.
Both KKR and MI have got a lot of game-changers with both bat and ball, but based on current form and the recent game-time, let’s talk about one player from each team who can be the most valuable player in Wednesday’s game.
Kolkata Knight Riders (Eoin Morgan)
Eoin Morgan has the highest strike rate among all the players who have scored more than 400 runs in T20 internationals in the last one year. But, while Morgan has maintained an extremely high strike rate against some world class bowling attacks playing for England, his average has been pretty high as well which speaks volumes about his consistency.
Morgan has played 13 T20 internationals over the last one year and has scored 430 runs at an average of 39.09 and a strike rate of 182.20. Morgan has hit a total of 30 sixes in T20 internationals in that duration.
Morgan’s ability to play with the field set up by the opposition captain is the reason why he is one of the most special players in the shortest format of the game. There is hardly any area of the ground where he can’t hit a boundary.
While the England captain is incredibly strong down the ground, he can explore the areas square of the wicket as well with sweeps and reverse-sweeps. If he finds his feet early in his innings, Morgan can be the real MVP for KKR against MI.
Mumbai Indians (Kieron Pollard)
Kieron Pollard is probably in the best form of his life at this stage and he was almost invincible in the recently finished season of Caribbean Premier League (CPL) where he smashed each and every team he came across.
However, MI has probably slotted Pollard at the wrong batting position. They used him at no. 6 in the last game and he had no time in his hand at all to get his eye in. He is the kind of player who can be unstoppable if he gets his eye in. MI needs to make sure Pollard goes out there to bat whenever a wicket falls after the 10th over mark.
There is hardly any batsman in the world who can match Pollard in terms of power, but apart from his power, Pollard’s strength is his ability to pick the right bowlers to attack. He is a calculative power-hitter and is a good reader of the game as well. The West Indies white-ball skipper identifies his bowlers and has the potential to change the game in the space of a few minutes with his insane six-hitting spree.
If Pollard is given the right batting slot by the MI think-tank, he can be their MVP with the bat against KKR.