Spotlight on Jayasuriya and Akhtar in key IPL clash

May 15th, 2008 - 9:13 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Shoaib Akhtar

Mumbai, May 15 (IANS) The focus will be on Shoaib Akhtar and Sanath Jayasuriya when Kolkata Knight Riders and Mumbai Indians face each other in an exciting clash in the Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 match at the Wankhede Stadium here Friday. Going by the last performances, Shoaib shone for the Knight Riders while Jayasuriya single-handedly won Mumbai Indians a match against Chennai Super Kings Wednesday night.

Both Mumbai Indians and Kolkatta Knight Riders will be hoping that the big guns continue to fire as the fight for the semi-final stage hots up.

For Mumbai Indians, the return of Sachin Tendulkar’s will also boost their chance despite the captain failing on his debut outing. The opening pair of Jayasuriya and Tendulkar need to be at their best if they hope to see off the challenge posed by Shoaib who is backed by talented Ishant Sharma and Ashok Dinda.

Mumbai Indians are still languishing in sixth spot with eight points, while Knight Riders are two points ahead in the fourth spot and a victory Friday is crucial that will help both the teams to strengthen their claims for a berth in the knockout stage.

The toss also would be crucial as the side that wins would, in all probability, put the rival team to bat on what’s expected to be another track offering copious bounce as was the case last night when there was a lot of pace and lift for the speedsters.

Both the teams are currently riding high, with Knight Riders having won their last three matches while the host team with its four-match winning streak would be looking to put their strengths to optimum use.

Mumbai Indians are unlikely to make any change in their winning combination and it should be same with the Knight Riders as well.

The teams (from):

Mumbai Indians: Sachin Tendulkar (captain), Sanath Jayasuriya, Luke Ronchi (wicketkeeper), Ajinkya Rahane, Robin Uthappa, Dwayne Bravo, Shaun Pollock, Loots Bosman, Dominic Thornely, Manish Pandey, Abhishek Nayar, Ashish Nehra, Aniket Chavan, Siddharth Chitnis, Gaurav Dhiman, Dilhara Fernando, Musavir Khote, Dhawal Kulkarni, Rajesh Pawar, Saurabh Tiwary, Ashwell Prince, Rohan Raje, Pinal Shah (wk), Swapnil Singh, Yogesh Takawale (wicketkeeper) and Vikrant Yeligati. Coach: Lalchand Rajput.

Kolkata Knight Riders: Sourav Ganguly (captain), Akash Chopra, Salman Butt, David Hussey, Tatenda Taibu, Laxmi Ratan Shukla, Wridhiman Saha (wicketkeeper), Iqbal Abdulla, Ishant Sharma, Ashok Dinda, Shoaib Akhtar, Ajit Agarkar, Murali Kartik, Mohd Hafeez, Sidharth Kaul, Umar Gul, Debabrata Das. Coach: John Buccanan

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