What happened the last time MI played an IPL Qualifier 2 match? 

MI played their last IPL Qualifier 2 match vs KKR [IPLT20]
MI played their last IPL Qualifier 2 match vs KKR [IPLT20]

The penultimate match of the ongoing IPL 2023 will see the Gujarat Titans (GT) take on the Mumbai Indians (MI) in the all-important Qualifier 2 of the tournament. The highly anticipated encounter is scheduled to be hosted by the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Friday (May 26).

The winner of the fixture will seal their birth in the ultimate IPL 2023 Final against the four-time champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) on Sunday (May 28). Mumbai, who won the Eliminator against the Lucknow Super Giants (LSG), will play their first Qualifier 2 of the IPL after six years.

The last time they battled in Qualifier 2 was against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the 2017 IPL at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru. A dominant MI streamrolled KKR by six wickets to book the summit clash against the Rising Pune Supergiants (RPS).

After putting Kolkata to bat first, Mumbai bowled them out for a paltry 107 in 18.5 overs. It all started when Jasprit Bumrah dismissed Chris Lynn in his first over. MI then inflicted crucial blows at regular junctures, and KKR had a horrendous start.

The Gautam Gambhir-led side were at 31/5 before Ishank Jaggi and Suryakumar Yadav added 56 runs for the sixth wicket. Karn Sharma dismissed Jaggi in the 15th over to complete his four-wicket haul. The leg-spinner dished out a wonderful spell of 4/16, which still remains the best bowling figures in any Qualifier 2 match.

Jasprit Bumrah also provided fine support to pick 3/7 in three overs as MI needed only 108 runs to enter the finals. In reply, Mumbai also lost early wickets and were at 35/3 when Krunal Pandya (45*) and Rohit Sharma (26) joined hands to bring their side closer to the target.

They added 54 runs, which all but killed the game. Pandya, in particular, showed great maturity, finishing as Mumbai's top scorer with 45 off 30 balls. He also hit the winning runs for MI as they hunted down the target with 33 balls remaining.

GT will fancy their chances against MI at home

Hardik Pandya and Rohit Sharma at the toss in Ahemdabad [IPLT20]
Hardik Pandya and Rohit Sharma at the toss in Ahemdabad [IPLT20]

Although Mumbai have been flying high after winning four of their last five encounters, including the Eliminator, GT might be slight favorites as they will be at home for Qualifier 2.

Having won five of their eight IPL fixtures in Ahmedabad, GT will enjoy the crowd support and will look to seal their berth in the finals for the second consecutive time. Moreover, the last time these two sides met at this venue, GT won the match by a comprehensive margin of 55 runs.

Having said that, a simple mistake might prove costly for them, as Mumbai also knows how to bag crunch moments, especially in high-octane clashes. The upcoming clash is expected to be highly contested, with both teams trying their best to outdo each other.

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