Mumbai Indians have guaranteed an IPL play-off place but four teams – Royal Challengers Bangalore, Delhi Capitals, Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad – are still in the running for the other three spots ahead of the final two group games.
Defending champions Mumbai, who head the table on 18 points from 13 matches, will still have a big say on who joins them in the knockout phase.
IPL table as it stands
Should Mumbai defeat Sunrisers Hyderabad – who sit in fifth place on 12 points – in Sharjah on Tuesday, Sunrisers will be eliminated.
In that scenario, the teams currently second, third and fourth on 14 points each – RCB, Delhi and Kolkata – would progress, with Sunrisers unable to match their points tally.
Hyderabad vs Mumbai
November 3, 2020, 1:50pm
However, should Sunrisers beat Mumbai and move onto 14 points, they will definitely qualify, due to their superior net run-rate, knocking one of RCB, Delhi or Kolkata out.
One of Delhi and RCB will be toasting a play-off place on Monday night, though, with the winner of their match in Abu Dhabi moving onto 16 points and a certain second-placed finish.
Delhi vs Bangalore
November 2, 2020, 1:50pm
For the loser, it will be time to sweat – unless their run-rate ends up being better than that of Kolkata’s, which stands at -0.214 after the Knight Riders’ demolition of Rajasthan Royals. If Kolkata have a superior run-rate to either Delhi or RCB come Monday night, they will advance.
RCB’s run-rate is -0.145 and Delhi’s is -0.159 so it is very tight and the loser will have to hope their margin of defeat is narrow in order to stay above Kolkata in the standings ahead of the Sunrisers vs Mumbai match the following day.
Whatever happens on Monday, one of Delhi, RCB and Kolkata will be praying for a Mumbai victory to bail them out on Tuesday and stop David Warner’s Sunrisers gate-crashing the top four.
Mumbai will be a tough opponent for Sunrisers having thumped RCB and Delhi in their previous two games to secure top spot and a place in the first qualifier.
The four-time champions will meet whoever finishes second, either RCB or Delhi, in Dubai on Thursday, with the winner of that advancing to the final at the same venue on November 10.
The sides finishing third and fourth will then go head to head in Abu Dhabi on Friday, with the loser eliminated and the winner going on to meet the loser of the first qualifier, in Abu Dhabi next Sunday, to determine who becomes the second finalist.
It’s a lot to get your head around but it sure is going to be a gripping climax – and you can watch it all live on Sky Sports Cricket!
Monday – Delhi vs RCB, 1.50pm, Sky Sports Cricket
Tuesday – Sunrisers vs Mumbai, 1.50pm, Sky Sports Cricket
Thursday – First qualifier, Mumbai vs TBC, 1.50pm, Sky Sports Cricket
Friday – Eliminator, 1.50pm, Sky Sports Cricket
Sunday – Second qualifier, 1.50pm, Sky Sports Cricket
Tuesday, November 10 – IPL Final, 1.50pm, Sky Sports Cricket
For Kings XI Punjab, Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan, though, the tournament is over.
Kings XI lost their final two fixtures to drop out of play-off contention having won five games in a row before then to thrust themselves right back into the top-four mix.
Chennai lost eight of their first 11 games to miss out on the play-offs for the first time in their history but did win their last three and MS Dhoni, 39, has confirmed he will return to captain the side again in 2021.
Chennai’s late upturn in form and Rajasthan’s thumping defeat to Kolkata condemned the Royals to a bottom-placed finish – England trio Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and Jofra Archer each impressed throughout the competition but their side only managed six victories in 14 games.
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