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Sunday, 18 November, 2018

Back the batsmen to go big in Bangalore

Virat Kohli's Royal Challengers face Rohit Sharma's Mumbai Indians

India one-day ace Rohit Sharma is coming into form for Mumbai
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Bangalore v Mumbai
Sky Sports Cricket, 3.30pm Tuesday

Royal Challengers Bangalore and Mumbai Indians were at the head of the IPL ante-post betting but the pair are side by side at the bottom of the table halfway through the league campaign.

Two wins and five defeats wasn’t the kind of record either side would have expected at this stage and the losers of their clash in Bangalore will be left with a mountain to climb to reach the playoffs.

The Royal Challengers are favourites although home advantage hasn’t meant much to them in recent weeks. Their last three fixtures have all been staged at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium but a six-wicket win over fellow strugglers Delhi was followed by defeats to Chennai and Kolkata.

Bangalore’s bowlers failed to defend targets of 176 and 206 in their last two outings and they were flayed for 213-6 in the reverse fixture against Mumbai and 217-4 in their home game against Rajasthan.

Last season’s IPL pitches at the Bangalore venue were scratchy,  spin-friendly surfaces but there have been runs galore at the ground this term so a speculative punt on a century being scored is advised.

Mumbai’s bowlers have struggled to live up to their title-winning heroics of last season and a high-scoring encounter looks likely between sides who are desperate for a win.

It’s 6-1 that any batsman reaches 100 and there have been several  near-misses at the M Chinnaswamy this season.

Rajasthan’s Sanju Samson made an unbeaten 92, despite facing only one ball in the first six Powerplay overs, while Delhi’s Rishabh Pant (85) and Chennai pair Ambati Rayudu (82) and MS Dhoni (70 not out, having come in at number six) have also gone big.

AB de Villiers, who hopes to be fit after missing Bangalore’s defeat to Kolkata on Sunday through illness, blasted 90 not out off just 39 balls against Delhi.

The first meeting between these teams featured innings of 94 from Mumbai skipper Rohit Sharma and an unbeaten 92 from his counterpart Virat Kohli, so the odds about a ton being scored make some appeal.

Recommendation
A century to be scored
1pt 6-1 bet365, Hills


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Mumbai’s bowlers have struggled to live up to their title-winning heroics of last season and a high-scoring encounter looks likely
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