Mumbai Indians take on Rising Pune Supergiant in the final of 2017 Indian Premier League at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad on Sunday.
Rohit Sharma's men are eyeing a record third IPL title whereas Pune, who may not even feature in next year's IPL if the suspended Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals are to make a comeback, will look to end on a high.
Coached by Mahela Jayawardene, Mumbai shed the tag of slow starters this season, winning nine of their first 11 matches to top the table. However, they lost the Qualifier 1 on Tuesday to Supergiant, who had already beaten them twice in the league stages.
Mumbai had to take the harder route to make the final, but they did in style outplaying two-time champions Kolkata Knight Riders in Qualifier 2 by six wickets after bowling Gautam Gambhir's men out for 107 in Bengaluru.
Rohit's men though need to be at their best to overcome the Pune jinx on the big night. The Hyderabad track has been two-paced so far this season and if another slow wicket is on offer, spinners are likely to play a crucial role.
Mumbai's Karn Sharma will be high on confidence after picking up four in their last outing. The likes of Lasith Malinga and Jasprit Bumrah, with their abilities to vary pace, can also be handful in Hyderabad. It would be a big boost if their leading wicket-taker Mitchell McClenaghan, who missed the last game with a niggle, is fit in time for the ultimate encounter.
On the other hand, Pune have clicked as a unit this season and their performances over Mumbai this season will give them a lot of confidence ahead of today's final. In MS Dhoni, Steve Smith and Ajinkya Rahane, the Supergiant have men who are not afraid of taking up responsibility.
Skipper Smith has also been able to bring out top performances from young guns of the likes of Rahul Tripathi, Jaydev Unadkat and Washington Sundar, whom the Australian captain has used wonderfully inside the powerplay overs.
While Supergiant will head into the tie with a psychological edge, Mumbai will be relying on their match-winners to help them create history on Sunday.
Possible XI: Rohit (c), Parthiv (wk), Simmons, Rayudu, Pollard, Krunal, Hardik, Karn, McCleneghan, Malinga, Bumrah
Possible XI: Smith (c), Rahane, Tripathi, Tiwary, Dhoni (wk), Christian, Sundar, Thakur, Ferguson, Unadkat, Zampa