‘Tis the season of IPL 2021 and we have a cracker of an opening game: Mumbai Indians VS Royal Challengers Bangalore. Today we will take a look at the MI VS RCB Preview, the predicted playing 11. But before we get started, if you haven’t read our in-depth SWOT analysis of these two teams, we suggest you do so to be better prepared.

IPL 2021: SWOT analysis of 5-times IPL Champions Mumbai Indians

IPL 2021: In-depth SWOT Analysis of Royal Challengers Bangalore

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic that has forced every concerned Indian into his/her home, IPL 2021 comes as a breath of fresh air. The tournament will go on for more than one and a half month and seems to be a promising one with players from all across the world making their way to Indian grounds.

Let’s take a look at the details of the match like, what’s the venue of the first game, what time you can catch it and where you can watch it live:

IPL Opening Match Details

IPL Game 1: MI Vs RCB

Venue – MA Chidambaram Stadium (Chennai)

Where to watch: Catch it live on Star Sports or Hotstar

Time – 7:30 PM IST, 02:00 PM GMT

Mumbai Indians VS Royal Challengers Bangalore Match Preview

Much akin to the masses during the COVID-19 pandemic, the teams of MI and RCB too have suffered lately. MI will miss the presence of South African Quinton de Kock due to quarantine rules as he returned from South Africa recently. RCB too will be concerned as Daniel Sams and Devdutt Padikkal tested COVID-19 positive and would be rested most likely.

Mumbai Indians (MI)

Mumbai Indians, like every year, is the clear favourite not only for this match, but for the tournament in its entirety. And why would they not be, the players of MI have gotten their hands on the trophy for 5 times, more than any other team. For the opener, the team would be looking to break the omen of losing their season opening games.

Quinton De Kock will be most likely missing the first game and would be replaced by young Indian wicket-keeper Ishan Kishan. Adam Milne too will be missed by the team and Australian batsman Chris Lynn can take his place. The team is quite balanced with the likes of Rohit Sharma, Lynn, Pollard, Pandya brothers and Bumrah in the dugout.

MI Full Squad:

Rohit Sharma (C), Quinton de Kock, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Chris Lynn, Amolpreet Singh, Saurabh Tiwary, Aditya Tare, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Anukul Roy, Jasprit Bumrah, Trent Boult, Rahul Chahar, Jayant Yadav, Dhawal Kulkarni, Mohsin Khan, Adam Milne, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Piyush Chawla, James Neesham, Yudhvir Singh, Marco Jansen, Arjun Tendulkar.

MI Predicted 11:

Rohit Sharma (C), Chris Lynn, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan (wk), Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, James Neesham/Piyush Chawla, Rahul Chahar, Trent Boult, Jasprit Bumrah

Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB)

RCB to IPL is what South Africa is to International Cricket. The Kohli-led team has come close to bringing the trophy home thrice but have left empty handed with the runners up position. Given Kohli’s ‘can-do’ spirit, the team can just break its championship curse and win the trophy this year for the first time.

After contracting and recovering from the COVID-19 virus, Padikkal is reported to open the batting line-up. He will bat under the guidance of the Indian team captain Virat Kohli who revealed earlier this year that he will open for RCB. It should be noted that prior to this, Kohli opened for RCB in the 9th edition of IPL in 2016 and had a phenomenal season. Other than Kohli, RCB will have the presence of South African talent AB de Villiers, Glenn Maxwell, Mohammed Azharuddeen and Sachin Baby. In the bowling department, the team will be relying on Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammaed Siraj and Washington Sundar.

RCB Full Squad

Virat Kohli (C), AB De Villiers, Yuzvendra Chahal, Devdutt Padikkal, Navdeep Saini, Washington Sundar, Mohammed Siraj, Kane Richardson, Adam Zampa, Finn Allen, Shahbaz Ahmed, Pavan Deshpande, Daniel Sams, Harhsal Patel, Kyle Jamieson, Glenn Maxwell, Sachin Baby, Rajat Patidar, Daniel Christian, Mohammed Azharuddeen, Suyash Prabhudessai, KS Bharat.

RCB Predicted 11:

Devdutt Padikkal, Virat Kohli (C), AB de Villiers (wk), Glenn Maxwell, Mohammad Azharuddeen, Sachin Babyi, Daniel Christian, Washington Sundar, Mohammed Siraj, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kane Richardson