Chennai Super Kings v Mumbai Indians: Big price on big Pollard

Kieron Pollard
Kieron Pollard doesn't need many balls to get a decent score.

Two middle-order batsmen have caught our attention at big prices and our money in this game is on Ravi Jadeja and Kieron Pollard, says Jamie Pacheco...

"But if you want the value price, go with Pollard. 15/2 is far too big for one of T20’s great exponents."

Chennai Super Kings v Mumbai Indians
Friday October 23, 15:00
Live on Sky Sports Cricket

Most of the blame lies on Dhoni's shoulders

Where do we start? They put a little too much faith in veteran duo Faf du Plessis and Shane Watson. Not that they've been hopeless, far from it, it's more just that they've given themselves no Plan B in terms of having any other overseas player 'on the bench' who can come in and do that job if necessary.

Ambati Rayudu has made plenty of pretty starts but rarely kicked on.

MS Dhoni has made bizarre decisions as a batsman and arguably even worse ones as a captain, especially in terms of team selection, assuming he has a big say in that.

Why hasn't Imran Tahir played yet when the conditions are crying out for a player like him? Why was youngster Narayan Jagadeesan jettisoned after just one more game? Especially when the man who came back was Kedar Jadhav, who has quite frankly, looked way out of his depth. Strange thing to say about a man who's played 73 ODIs but it's certainly looked that way.

You win and lose as a team, yes. But boy does Dhoni have a lot to answer for.

Inevitably he probably won't have to answer to any of it because he's...Dhoni. But from his body language and attitude, I'm pretty sure this is the last we'll see of him in the IPL once the season ends. For CSK it can't end soon enough.

Ind MS Dhoni 1280.jpg

Mumbai need to learn from Sunday's mistakes

Mumbai will probably finish Top 2 and that defeat to the Kings XI on Sunday will quickly be forgotten. But perhaps it shouldn't be.
It's absolutely criminal to not chase six in a Super Over. I don't care how well Mohammad Shami bowled, you have to do something to find a boundary from somewhere or some sort of gap where you can run two. They did neither, tied the (first) Super Over and then lost the second one. Good practice for the next one, if there is one, but they'd better learn from it.

One thing they need to be careful about is team selection. They decided to swap James Pattinson for Nathan Coulter-Nile a couple of games ago because they wanted more batting but they really didn't need to.

With players like Krunal Pandya and Kieron Pollard sometimes batting at seven, they shouldn't have to worry about their lower-order batting too much. The effective but unspectacular Pattinson is a better bowler than Coulter-Nile and they should realise they don't need to fix what isn't broken.

Mumbai short but are they short enough?

The 1.674/6 on Mumbai is both one of the shorter prices you're likely to see all season, and also one of the better ones, if that makes any sense.

I guess it's not any shorter because CSK beat them the first time they played this edition, but that seems like a long time ago now.

The one slight danger is that with their season all but over Chennai play with the sort of freedom and controlled aggression they haven't been playing with up to now, which is of course what got them into this position in the first place.

But that will only get you so far. There's a lot more to a game of T20 cricket than just changing your levels of intent and I don't see how CSK's old and tired warhorses can find a way to win against this team of thoroughbreds.

Rohit Sharma plays shot 1280.jpg

Jadeja to strike again?

Say what you like about Ravi Jadeja but he certainly doesn't stop trying. Other CSK players have let their heads drop but he just keeps on plugging away. A brilliant catch or run out here, an economical over there, a quick 40 with the bat out of nothing; he just never stops.

He top scored last time out at a huge price with just 35 as CSK's batting collapsed once again. Is it that impossible that it happens all over again? He did so last time from six and he could easily be promoted on the back of that. The Sportsbook still has him at 14/1 and I can't let that go unbacked given how poor CSK's batsmen have been.

Pollard's price catches the eye

Quinton de Kock is the straightforward bet at 11/4 to be Mumbai top bat after the way he's been playing of late. He's certainly a better bet than skipper Rohit Sharma, who is the same price and rather out of form at the moment.

But if you want the value price, go with Pollard. 15/2 is far too big for one of T20's great exponents. The concern is that CSK bowl so poorly that he doesn't get a go.

It's a possibility but then again, it's why he's that price. It's also a possibility that if no-one gets a particularly big score, he doesn't even need to be at the crease for that long because of how quickly he scores once he's there.


Staked: 23pts
Returned: 23.74 pts
P&L:+5.34 pts

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