- Mumbai Indians v Punjab Kings
- TATA Indian Premier League
- Wednesday April 13, 2022
- Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune (3pm UK)
It seems surreal to be writing this but four matches into the 2022 IPL season, Mumbai Indians are 0-4 and are only being propped up from the foot of the table by Chennai Super Kings, who have an inferior net run rate.
That’s because Mumbai are the most successful team in the history of this tournament, winning it five times and being runners-up once.
What is equally as surprising is that all four of their defeats have been very comfortable for their opponents.
Punjab have started rather better, winning two of their four matches quite nicely. They were hammered in their second match by Kolkata Knight Riders and beaten on the last ball, most recently, by Gujarat Titans.
The Kings will clearly be looking for more consistency.
Mumbai? Well, they’ll just want to get a win on the board, however that eventuates.
I am going to swerve the result bet this time.
So we’ll stick with the following individual suggestions and wish you luck…..
Mumbai teenager Varma can better international colleagues Kishan, Sharma, Yadav and Pollard
Tilak Varma has been one of the positives of this competition with the bat for Mumbai.
The 19-year-old left-hander has put together some solid knocks from the middle order.
He has scored 22, 61 and 38 not out in four games and it’s a surprise to see him at 7/1 with Ladbrokes to emerge at the team’s top batter in this match.
That looks too tempting to turn down and a play is recommended.
Bluey to Leave Punters Tickled Pink
On the other side, Jonny ‘Bluey’ Bairstow has only played once so far in this season’s IPL, with a score of eight in Friday’s defeat against Gujarat Titans.
Bairstow is a destructive batter in this form of the game with an excellent IPL record.
He has scored 1,046 runs in 29 career appearances with an average of 40.23. That is 10 runs higher than his overall career T20 batting average.
He should be better for his brief appearance at the crease last week and ready to prove why Punjab outlaid a hefty fee for him in February’s auction. And it has been said in these pages previously just how dangerous Bairstow can be when he has a point to prove.
Firstly, back him to be Punjab’s top scorer (7/2 with Betfair). Then, if that comes to pass he’d be in with a better chance than most of winning the Player of the Match, for which he is 9/1 with the same company. Let’s take the plunge.