Mumbai Indians need to fire against Deccan Chargers

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Mumbai, Apr 26 (UNI) A winless Mumbai Indians will be under tremendous pressure when they take on Deccan Chargers from Hyderabad, who are also without a win in this tournament in a crunch match at the D Y Patil Stadium at Nerul here tomorrow.

With stand-in captain Harbhajan Singh in fresh controversy and a big question mark still on Sachin Tendulkar's availability, Mumbai Indians will have to produce some vintage cricket to open their account in this tournament.

While the hosts were already struggling to open their account after three matches in the Twenty20 extravaganza in the absence of regular captain Tendulkar, who is nursing a groin injury, Harbhajan Singh added to their agony as he allegedly slapped rival pacer S Sreesanth immediately after their match against Kings XI Punjab in Mohali last night.

Harbhajan has been slapped with a show cause by the BCCI, asking why action should not be taken against him.

How the Reliance Industries-owned Mumbai team management handles this controversy and whether Harbhajan can be continued to be given the important mantle of captaincy in the likely absence of Tendulkar are other issues facing the squad ahead of the tie against Hyderabad, especially with Andrew Symonds' presence in the rival ranks.

A repeat on-field confrontation between the Indian offie and the Aussie all rounder, after their infamous racism-row, would be the last thing that would be looked forward to by the two team managements and right-thinking cricket fans.

Mumbai opened their campaign at the Wankhede Stadium against Bangalore's Royal Challengers came a cropper and then missed a victory over Chennai in the latter's backyard before being embarrassed by the Punjab King's XI at Mohali last night.


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