Champs Triumph Knights gear up for opening match as Season 2 kicks off

The opening day fixtures pit Aakash Tigers against Triumph Knights, while ARCS Andheri take on SoBo SuperSonics in the evening game.

Mumbai’s very own T20 league is back for a second season and this year’s spectacle promises to be bigger, better and grander than before. Two new teams – Aakash Tigers Mumbai Western Suburbs and Eagle Thane Strikers, have joined the fray for Season 2. The likes of Arjun Tendulkar, Shardul Thakur and Aditya Tare will be making their debut this year in the franchise tournament played at the Wankhede Stadium.

Without further ado, let’s dive into the games on Day 1 and how the teams might be shaping up.

Takkar No. 1: Aakash Tigers MWS vs Triumph Knights Mumbai North East

The defending champions will be hosting the tournament newbies in the opening fixture of this year, with the latter’s big money signing Arjun Tendulkar expected to make his debut. The Tigers also have a strong bowling attack, having picked veteran city bowlers Dhawal Kulkarni and Shams Mulani at the 2019 draft. They also have a strong batting line-up with the likes of Subramaniam Doraiswamy and Aakarshit Gomel in their roster.

The Tigers though are against a strong Triumph Knights side who are the defending champions. With city stalwart Suryakumar Yadav leading the line, they also have several of last season’s top performers back like Akash Parkar, Vinayak Bhoir and Parikshit Valasangkar. The also strengthened their bowling attack this year by acquiring seasoned city cricketers Royston Dias and Karan Shah.

Kya Bolta Hai

Expect a fiery contest when the Tigers’ strong bowling unit face the experienced batsman of Triumph Knights. The debutants would hope Tendulkar would fire on all cylinders right from the start to give them the ascendency against a strong Triumph Knights side.

Takkar No 2: ARCS Andheri vs SoBo Supersonics

ARCS Andheri couldn’t make it past the group last year, but with a younger, meaner squad this time around they would be hoping to go all the way. The ARCS decided to retain Mumbai domestic regulars Tushar Deshpande and Shubham Ranjane. Deshpande in particular has been in great form of late; and was leading wicket-taker for Mumbai in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. The franchise also re-acquired Iqbal Abdullah and Akhil Herwadkar while picking up star city all-rounders Kevin Almeida and Gaurav Jathar. With this reinvigorated side, the ARCS would be optimistic for a turnaround this year.

Their opposition, the SoBo SuperSonics also decided to focus on youth, with 23-year-old Jay Bista being retained. The franchise also have a strong bowling core led by last season’s joint highest wicket-taker Badrey Alam, alongside spinners Dhrumil Matkar and Parag Khanapurkar. On the batting front, they picked hard hitting Hersh Tank while also getting experienced campaigners like Yogesh Takawale and Rohan Raje.

Kya Bolta Hai

ARCS Andheri have a strong bowling line-up but their batting could be a little brittle if the likes of Herwadkar and Ranjane are to be dismissed cheaply. The SuperSonics have the bowlers as well therefore if they can perform on the day, they would emerge victorious.

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