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– By Siddharth Kashyap
Just when we thought the Mankading controversy was behind Ashwin, there he was, at the centre of another controversy. This time, however, he was at the receiving end of it. A field placement gaffe brought Andre Russell back, who was out bowled, and he went on to play a match winning knock for KKR.
Mumbai Indians too were part of a controversial last ball finish against RCB, but they will take that win and go into this match feeling a lot more confident.
KXIP Probable XI : Chris Gayle*, Lokesh Rahul (wk), Mayank Agarwal, Mandeep Singh, David Miller*, Sarfaraz Khan, Ravichandran Ashwin(c), Varun Chakravarthy, Sam Curran*/Hardus Viljoen*, Mohammad Shami, Andrew Tye*
MI Probable XI : Rohit Sharma(c), Quinton de Kock*, Suryakumar Yadav, Yuvraj Singh, Krunal Pandya, Hardik Pandya, Kieron Pollard*, Lasith Malinga*, Mayank Markande, Jasprit Bumrah, Mitchell McClenaghan*
Both the teams should go in with almost the same playing XI, except for a possible change in the KXIP team. Viljoen needs to make way for Curran, as the latter is very useful with both bat and ball. KL Rahul is yet to show what he can do, and Punjab would be counting on him to get them off to good start along with Gayle. IPL is in many ways a battle between fans as well but when Yuvraj Singh bats, forget which team one supports, every Indian is rooting for him to do well. Watch out for him this match. From the outset, it seems like a high scoring, with both teams having explosive openers and deep batting line ups.
Match Prediction : KXIP to beat MI.