Skipper Jaffer insists Mumbai is not looking to avenge last season's loss to Rajasthan
After an emphatic win over Railways in the opening game of the Ranji Trophy Elite Group, Mumbai will be keen to keep the momentum going. Mumbai take on defending champions Rajasthan, who thrashed Wasim Jaffer's men in last season's quarter-final, at the Cricket Club of India today.
Zaheer Khan with his Mumbai teammates Ajit Agarkar and Ramesh Powar
during a training session on the eve of the Ranji Trophy clash against
Rajasthan at CCI. Pic/Suresh KK
Plate group team Rajasthan bundled up Mumbai's strong batting line up for 252 in the previous season and then rattled up a mammoth 589 in reply to knock out the 39-time Ranji champions and also shatter their hopes of winning three titles in a row.
However, Mumbai skipper Wasim Jaffer does not see the contest as a revenge match. "It's not so. We had lost in the knock-out, and this is a league game. We have started well and will try to continue in the same vein.
"Our team has a good balance of experienced players and youngsters," he told reporters on the eve of the match.
Like always, Mumbai will be banking on skipper Jaffer to provide a good start and will be hoping in-form Rohit Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav to put on a good show in the middle order. Mumbai will be boosted with the return of pace spearhead Ajit Agarkar for the second round tie. All-rounder Abhishek Nayar also returns in place of injured Prashant Naik, who was hit in the neck during the last match in New Delhi.
The hosts would look to their spin trio of Iqbal Abdulla, Ankit Chavan and Ramesh Powar to earn the bulk of their wickets. Meanwhile, defending champions Rajasthan need to step up their game. They were pushed to the wall by Karnataka in their opening encounter that ended in a draw. Skipper Hrishikesh Kanitkar will be relying on pacers Pankaj Singh and Deepak Chahar to make early inroads against Mumbai.