Matches this weekend as follows
Saturday 13th April
Mumbai Indians v Rajasthan Royals
Mumbai won their fourth game in six outings when chasing 197 to beat Kings XI on Wednesday thanks to a great finishers performance from Kieron Pollard who returned to form and took them to an unlikely win
Rajasthan suffered a last ball loss to Chennai on Thursday, narrowly failing to defend 151 after having their opponents 24/4 with a poor last over from Stokes making all the difference, Rajasthan have now only won one of their six games
Mumbai are 4/6 here to win here at home with Skybet, a price that looks very fair
Kings XI Punjab v RCB
Kings XI maintained their unbeaten home record in beating Sunrisers on Monday restricting Sunrisers to 150 and then winning by six wicket’s thanks to Rahul’s third half century of the competition opening the batting. Kings looked on course for another victory when setting Mumbai 197 to win on Wednesday thanks to Rahul’s 100 but lost control in the field against Pollard’s ferocious hitting, losing off the last ball and Kings XI now have four wins and three losses from their seven games.
RCB have recorded six losses in a row after loss to Delhi last weekend scoring 149 and losing by 4 wickets. RCB are a poor fielding side. They have the second highest strike rate per wicket, taking one only every 29 balls and their fielding according to some measures costs them eight runs a game, comfortably the worst in the competition. As it generally takes 8 wins out of 14 games to be in contention for the play-offs RCB are on the brink of a humiliating elimination from contention considering the talent they have in their team such as Kohli and De Villiers
At home it is possible to make the case that Kings XI should be shorter than the 9/10 offred by Skybet.
Sunday 14th April
KKR v CSK
In the reverse fixture last Tuesday in Chennai KKR could only make 109 in their first innings and CSK won by seven wickets with two and a half overs to spare. With five wins from their six matches CSK are well on their way to the play-offs again. They play with a consistent strategy and have unique home conditions that they play well. They have won 16 of their last 17 matches at home but now face another three matches away in succession after facing Rajasthan on Thursday
Chennai beat Rajasthan off the last ball on Thursday for their sixth win in seven matches, recovering from 24/4 to win
KKR haven’t quite hit the heights with their bowling attack so far this season. But are still second in the table at the time of writing with four wins out of six
Chennai as even money underdogs with Skybet appeal
Sunrisers v Delhi Capitals
Sunrisers lost at Kings XI on Monday failing to defend 149 and losing their third game out of six so far this season.
Last season on their run to the IPL final Sunrisers relied on a superb bowling attack headed by Rashid Khan to take them deep in the competition but Kane Williamson and David Warner aside the batting line up was quite fragile and cost them when it really mattered in the play offs. This season the bowling attack has yet to hit the heights of 2018 but what has them still squarely in contention to go deep in the tournament even despite the injured Williamson is the blistering achievements of Warner and Bairstow at the top of the order. Through their first six games the openers have combined for 612 runs, the pair are the top run scorers in the competition and have scored 67% of their team’s runs. Their brilliance has left the middle of the batting order short of time in the middle which could be an issue further down the line but for now the figures are as follows
Warner 349 runs at a 146 strike rate with three fifties and a hundred
Bairstow 263 runs at a 161 strike rate and a hundred
Warner has faced 75 balls more than Bairstow in the six games after Bairstow’s early dismissal against Kings XI in the last game.
Next for Sunrisers is a home game against the Delhi Capitals on Sunday. Delhi beat RCB by 4 wickets last weekend chasing 150 to win with Rabada taking 4-21 and Iyer scoring 67 to also take their record to 3-3 after six games
In the Sunrisers top batsman market understandably Warner and Bairstow are favourites for this match. Warner’s scores so far in this IPL are 85,69,100*, 10,15 and 70*. In truth the last of those innings was slightly odd as he batted through in a modest total but the consistency of his form is striking and he remains a solid prospect in this sub market
Warner is 9/4 with Skybet.