IPL 2017, MI vs KXIP: Why Gautam Gambhir, Steve Smith and David Warner will closely follow today's match at Wankhede

Up against Mumbai Indians, KXIP can take some confidence from the fact that they defeated Kolkata Knight Riders and Gujarat Lions in their previous two matches.

By Suyash Srivastava | Last Updated: May 11, 2017, 15:48 PM IST
IPL 2017, MI vs KXIP: Why Gautam Gambhir, Steve Smith and David Warner will closely follow today's match at Wankhede

Mumbai: Glenn Maxwell-led Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) take on two-time Indian Premier League (IPL) winners Mumbai Indians (MI) at the Wankhede stadium in a must-win match. It's a crucial match for Punjab since a loss will rule them out of the race for the play-offs.

While it is a big match for all the supporters of KXIP, three others teams will be closely watching the match today.

For KXIP (12 points from 12 games), a slip against Mumbai Indians will mean that KKR (16 points from 13 games), Rising Pune Supergiant (16 from 12 games) and defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad (15 points from 13 games) will be through even before playing their respective last league matches.

KXIP can take some confidence from the fact that they defeated Kolkata Knight Riders and Gujarat Lions in their previous two matches.

While Hashim Amla's second ton of the series guided them to a comprehensive six-wicket win over Gujarat Lions, skipper Maxwell and spinners helped them topple KKR.

Now that Amla and David Miller have left for national duties, the onus will be on Martin Guptill, Shaun Marsh and Maxwell to put their experience into count.

On the other hand, despite having qualified for the playoffs, Rohit Sharma's men haven't booked a top-two spot yet. With 18 points in 12 games, Mumbai need one win from their remaining two matches to ensure that.

If Punjab win their remaining two matches and SRH lose their last encounter against Gujarat Lions, KXIP will reach the play-offs. There is one other scenario where even if SRH win their last game, and RPS lose their last match and KXIP win the remaining two games, Punjab will still qualify for the play-offs.

Thus, today's match is a huge one for Punjab and the players need to play out of their skins to beat Mumbai at Wankhede Stadium - where they have lost only match this season -- to Supergiant.