We recently got the answer to the question of the year, “Why Katappa killed Bahubali?”. And now another big answer of 2017 awaits us today, who is going to lift the IPL 2017 trophy. After 56 league matches and intense playoff battle, the two best sides of the tournament will battle it out in the City of Nizams to cross the final hurdle. Rising Pune Supergiants or Mumbai Indians, who will it be? Here are the Preview and Match Result prediction for IPL 2017 final : MI vs RPSG.
Rising Pune Supergiants have truly risen from being one step shy of wooden spoon in 2016 to being the favourites of the title this year. They recovered from a slow start and established momentum as the season has unfurled. They have got performances from both sides of the coin; Rahul Tripathi, Rs 10 lakh recruit and Ben Stokes, the costliest guy of this season has been worth every penny. And yes they have beaten the Mumbai Indians in all their encounters in 2017.
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Mumbai Indians will play their third final in five years and fourth overall. Their journey so far has been impeccable as they have rolled over the best sides of the tournament (except RPS till now). Such has been their collective effort that 10 different players have won Man of the Match awards for them this season. But they did join the Hyderabad party a little late as Pune trumped them in their own backyard in Qualifier 1. MI have several players who have the experience of playing in the IPL final together, which can hold them in good stead.
And can we expect MSD special again tonight. His tryst with finals is known world over. His exploits are written all over the history of cricket in golden letters as he has performed when it has mattered the most. This will be his 7th IPL final in ten years and this is no less achievement. Truly we feel honoured to be born in his era. Surely he is the player of big times.
Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad has played host to two different wickets. David Warner hit a superb century here against KKR. And Mumbai folded for a paltry 138 in the last match owing to two paced nature of wicket. But with 12 days break, curators are confident that wicket will play true once again.
RISING PUNE SUPERGIANTS – STRENGTHS
Ajinkya Rahane at the top has returned to form just at the right moment. Manoj Tiwary has been consistent throughout the season. His contribution in the middle order has given a much needed stability to the Pune side. And they have M S Dhoni who triggered the shift in momentum in the last match against Mumbai with some pinch hitting at death. He will be expected to come good again in the final.
The bowling of RPS has been their prime source of winning crucial matches. Jaydev Unadkat has been one of the most impressive bowlers this season. His wicket taking abilities coupled with miserly economy rates have baffled the opposition. Washington Sundar has really improved with every game. And he’ll be looking to repeat his Man of the Match performance in the last game. Ferguson and Thakur have lended ample balance to the side.
RISING PUNE SUPERGIANTS – WEAKNESSES
The absence of Ben Stokes and Imran Tahir would be a big concern for them. Dan Christian hasn’t been able to contribute much with the bat. Steve Smith has thrown away good starts and being the captain he’ll be expected to lead the team from the front. Rahul Tripathi hasn’t done justice to his immense talent in the last few games. Can the young and inexperienced Pune side cause an upset and clinch their maiden title?
MUMBAI INDIANS – STRENGTHS
Well for the side who have already won it two times, they have a sure upper hand over their younger rivals. The Pandya brothers have finished the game for them on several occasions. Captain Rohit Sharma seems to be hitting the right gear just in time for finals. In Kieron Pollard, they have a match winner in their side.
The bowling of MI has truly impressed one and all. Jasprit Bumrah has been unplayable so far. His exemplary death bowling skills notwithstanding, he picked up wickets even with the new ball in the last game against KKR. Karn Sharma has proved his selection over Harbhajan Singh as the right move. He has taken wickets regularly in the middle overs to keep the opposition under pressure. Mitchell Johnson also bowled well in the last match.
MUMBAI INDIANS – WEAKNESSES
Lendl Simmons has failed to make an impact in the last few matches. Ambati Rayudu has also disappointed in the last two games. Lasith Malinga hasn’t been at his lethal best. And most important thing, they have lost to Pune thrice this season which would be playing in the back of their minds.
RPS – They are unlikely to make changes to the side that won against Mumbai in the qualifier.
Ajinkya Rahane, Rahul Tripathi, Steve Smith (capt), Manoj Tiwary, MS Dhoni (wk), Daniel Christian, Lockie Ferguson, Washington Sundar, Adam Zampa, Jaydev Unadkat, Shardul Thakur
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MI – Krunal Pandya appeared to suffer a bout of cramps during his innings against KKR in the second qualifier. But Rohit reckoned that he looked okay to play the final. Mitchell McClenaghan, who did not play the last game against KKR, will be assessed on the morning of the final in Hyderabad.
Parthiv Patel (wk), Lendl Simmons, Ambati Rayudu, Rohit Sharma (capt), Krunal Pandya, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Karn Sharma, Mitchell Johnson, Jasprit Bumrah, Lasith Malinga
HEAD TO HEAD
Overall: Played – 5, RPS – 4, MI – 1.
In 2017: Played – 3, RPS – 3, MI – 0.
RPS won home and away fixtures this season. And then shocked MI in qualifier 1 at Wankhede.
Predicting the final, well do you really expect it. One last thing, “where there’s a final, there’s MSD.” Here’s what we predict,
If MI bats first
1st Innings Score: 160 – 170 MI wins by 10 – 20 runs.
If RPS bats first
1st Innings Score: 160 – 170 RPS wins by 10 – 20 runs.