Key match stats
Pitch Stats – M. Chinnaswamy Stadium
Average first innings score: 169
Average first innings winning score: 188
Average powerplay score:46
Win % batting 1st vs batting 2nd: 41% / 54%
Team form RCB vs MI
Recent meetings: IPL 2022 - RCB won by 7 wickets
Preview RCB vs MI
Arguably the biggest match of the opening round and certainly the glamour tie of the tournament to date sees 5 times winners Mumbai Indians travel to perennial underachievers Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Mumbai of course are famed for making slow starts to IPL tournaments but given their struggles last season, they'll be very keen to reverse that trend in 2023. In fact, you have to go all the way back to 2012 for the last time MI won their opening fixture of an IPL season!
Getting some allround options into the squad was key for MI during the auction and they went in big on Cameron Green. While the tall Australian is undoubtedly a rising star of the game, he does not have a huge amount of T20 experience to draw upon let alone prior knowledge of the IPL.
MI will be happy to hear that neither of their young South Africans in Tristan Stubbs and Dewalt Brevis are required to play against the Dutch and so will be available from the start of the tournament.
Otherwise, the one glaring absence is of course Jasprit Bumrah who will not feature at all in IPL 2023. Having signed Jofra Archer during last year's super auction, it means that Mumbai fans will have to wait at least another year before seeing those 2 bowl in tandem and with the injury to Jhye Richardson as well, it does leave MI very short of fast bowling options at present.
RCB already knew they would be without new recruit Will Jacks but moved quickly to replace him with Michael Bracewell. More recently they've discovered that they'll also be without Rajit Patidar for the first part of the season due to injury.
Sri Lanka's decision to retain their first choice options for the series against New Zealand means that RCB will be without Wanindu Hasaranga for the opening few games of IPL 2023 while their are serious injury concerns over Josh Hazlewood coming into the tournament.
In complete contrast to today's opponents, RCB have started the last few IPLs very strongly and they'll need to do something similar this year as well when considering that 6 of their 7 opening matches take place at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium.
|Venue||Average 1st innings score||Balls per 6|
|M. Chinnaswamy Stadium||169.2||15.9|
Highest average scores at venues used in IPL 2023 and balls per 6 hit
The M Chinnaswamy Stadium is known as a high scoring, 6 hitting venue so it'll be key for RCB's batsmen to hit the ground running in IPL 2023 to take advantage of that fact.
RCB vs MI head to head
MI bowling vs RCB batting
The big question for RCB to answer is whether the injury to Patidar who was originally due to bat at 3, will prompt a rethink of the overall balance of their top order? Prior to that news, coach Mike Henson had moved quickly to establish that Virat Kohli would open the batting with Faf du Plessis once again.
IPL 2022 powerplay batting stats for Kohli and du Plessis
Kohli is (perhaps not surprisingly) the all-time leading run scorer at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium which as a venue has generally favoured teams that make a solid start and then look to cash in with wickets in hand later on. Still, for a side that was averaging just 43 in the powerplay last season (only SRH scored at a slower rate) it must be tempting for RCB to consider introducing a player like Finn Allen to up the tempo while the field restrictions are in place.
Glenn Maxwell's return to fitness is a major boost for RCB and they will certainly be hoping that the Australian can improve on his IPL record at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium which to date has been woeful.
Glenn Maxwell IPL batting stats at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium
With the loss of Bumrah, a huge amount of responsibility rests on the shoulders of Jofra Archer who himself is making tentative steps back into the game following a lengthy lay off. The England quick has a good head to head record against both du Plessis and Maxwell in T20 cricket.
Jofra Archer previous T20 dismissals vs du Plessis and Maxwell
That being said we saw last year that sides were happy to see out Bumrah's 4 overs, safe in the knowledge that their were far easier opportunities to score runs against some of MI's other bowlers and it wouldn't surprise me to see opposition teams do something similar to Archer this season too!
RCB bowling vs MI Batting
Mohammed Siraj had a disappointing 2022 tournament and with big question marks over the fitness of Josh Hazlewood, he'll need to deliver significantly more this time around if RCB are to finally win an IPL. He's taken 8 wickets at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in IPL matches prior to this at an average of over 35 and economy close to 10 while his head to head record against Mumbai's batsmen is not strong either.
Mohammed Siraj T20 head to head vs current Mumbai squad
If RCB's seamers can't get the early breakthroughs then they might be tempted to turn to spin in the powerplay. We saw Michael Bracewell trouble the left-handed Ishan Kishan in the recent T20 series between India and New Zealand and of course, RCB also have Glenn Maxwell who could exploit that match-up too. Surprisingly, Rohit Sharma's record against right-arm finger spin in the powerplay isn't as strong as you'd imagine. He averages 28 with a strike rate of 123 against off-spin in the powerplay across his T20 career.
Ishan Kishan T20 head to head vs right-arm finger spin
This match could see 2 new players to the IPL go up against one another with Cameron Green facing Reece Topley. Despite his fairly hefty price tag, Green does not have a wealth of experience in the T20 format but from what we have seen so far, he does have tendency to get out to left-arm fast medium bowling, a fact that Topley will be looking to exploit if he plays.
Cameron Green T20 head to head vs left-arm fast medium bowling
All stats used in this blog are from my own databases which are freely accessible below
IPL head to head player stats
IPL player stats by venue
IPL stadium statistics.
Images are my own with the exception of player profiles and background images which are used under a creative commons license or otherwise royalty free