Mumbai have upper hand over Super Kings in clash of IPL giants

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Hyderabad: Familiar foes and the two most successful teams of the IPL — Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings — clash in a mouth-watering final here on Sunday, following a rather eventful season that produced some unprecedented moments on the field.

It can’t be disputed that Mumbai go into the final as the favourites, having beaten CSK as many as three times earlier in the tournament including in the Qualifier 1 at Chennai on Tuesday.

However, statistics count for little going into the title fight with both teams being in the situation before multiple times.

Rohit Sharma-led Mumbai can certainly take confidence out of the fact that they have won three out of the four finals they have been part of, including the two against CSK in 2013 and 2015.

For three-time champions CSK, who have entered their eighth final, it has been another remarkable season after last year when they made a triumphant return having serving a two-year suspension.

Whatever the outcome may be, the final here will add another memorable chapter to their longtime rivalry.

With World Cup beginning right after the IPL, the league had additional significance for tainted Australian stars — Steve Smith and David Warner — who made a successful return after serving out one-year bans for their role in the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa.

Warner especially made a roaring return by amassing 692 runs and formed the most dangerous opening pairing this season alongside Jonny Bairstow. The left-handed opener, who is back in Australia for the World Cup preparation, is set to end as the tournament’s highest run-getter.

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