Four matches down and after registering a hat-trick of losses, there is still no place for the World No. 1 in their line-up. The Kings have so far managed a solitary win against Rajasthan Royals in their campaign opener before losing back-to-back matches to Chennai Super Kings, Delhi Capitals and Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Punjab made wholesale changes to their bowling line-up in their first match at the Chepauk against Hyderabad, but yet ended on the losing side.
While the top-order comprising the trio of KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal and Chris Gayle has been amongst the runs albeit inconsistently, it is their No. 4 Nicholas Pooran’s dismal form in the four matches so far that has been a cause of worry for the Mohali-based franchise.
Pooran has scored just nine runs in the four innings thus far, including three ducks. The team management’s decision to persist with the West Indian, while leaving Malan to warm the bench is even more baffling.
Defending champions Mumbai Indians, on the other hand, have once again begun their campaign on a topsy-turvy note, losing two and winning a couple in their first four games. Over the years, they have made it a pattern to get their campaign back on track towards the business end of the tournament.
Mumbai will hope that their famed batting order can get a huge total. Coming to their bowling, Rahul Chahar has been Rohit’s go-to bowler this season, with the leg-spinner bagging 8 wickets so far and is expected to return a handful against Punjab.