Mumbai Indians (MI) beat SunRisers Hyderabad in a Super Over thriller at Wankhede Stadium on Friday to become the third team to qualify for the Indian Premier League (IPL) playoffs.
Defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Delhi Capitals have already confirmed their respective spots in the top-four. Now, one of the four teams -- SRH, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), Kings XI Punjab (KKR) and Rajasthan Royals (KKR) -- will qualify for the playoffs as the fourth team. Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) were already out of the contention.
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Ahead of Friday's KXIP vs KKR match, we look at the playoff qualification scenarios, including where the three already qualified teams will most likely finish in the league table.
First, here are the remaining league matches:
Match 52 - KXIP vs KKR in Mohali, Match 53 - DC vs RR in Delhi, Match 54 - RCB vs SRH in Bengaluru, Match 55 - KXIP vs CSK, Match 56 - MI vs KKR in Mumbai
Likely scenarios for each team:
1st - CSK (18 points from 13 matches, NRR +0.209)
The MS Dhoni-led side needs to beat KXIP in their last league match to top the table.
If they lose, and MI beat KKR, then the Rohit Sharma -led outfit will finish at the top thanks to their better NRR. It will leave CSK in the second place.
If CSK lose very badly and DC overwhelm RR and MI beat KKR, then the defending champions will finish third. All three top teams will have 18 points and as things stand now, CSK have the worst NRR.
2nd - MI (16 points from 13 matches, NRR +0.321)
A win against KKR will certainly guarantee a top-two finish for the three-time champions.
If they win and CSK lose to KXI, then MI will finish at the top (thanks to their better NRR).
If they lose, and DC beat KXIP then MI will finish third with 16 points.
3rd - DC (16 points from 13 matches, NRR -0.096)
Delhi Capitals can still top the table by beating RR by a massive margin, and if MI lose to KKR and KXIP thrash CSK. If they beat RR and MI lose to KKR, then they finish second.
If the top three win their respective last matches, it remains as it is. If the top two teams win and DC lose, it also remains as it is.
4th - SRH (12 points from 13 matches, NRR +0.653)
A win is not enough for SRH. They also need the winner of the KXIP vs KKR match to lose their last game – KXIP vs CSK/ KKR vs MI. In that case, SRH will be the only team with 14 points.
Their healthy NRR will come in handy if two teams are tied with 14 points each, assuming SRH win their last game.
If they lose to RCB, then they need DC to beat RR and the winner of the KXIP vs KKR match to lose their last match. In that case, KKR, KXIP and SRH will have 12 points each and the Kane Williamson-led side should go through thanks to their superior NRR.
5th - RR (11 points from 13 matches, NRR -0.321)
A mere win is not enough for RR. The most they can have is 13. No team with 13 points have qualified for the playoffs.
They need to beat DC, then hope for RCB's win over SRH and pray that the winner of the KXIP vs KKR match also lose their last match.
It can happen only if they beat DC.
6th - KKR (10 points from 12 matches, NRR +0.100)
KKR will qualify -- if they win both the remaining matches and SRH lose to RCB; if they lose one match and DC beat RR, RCB thrash SRH, and KXIP lose one of their remaining matches. Even then, they will need a very good run rate.
7th - KXIP (10 points from 12 matches, NRR -0.296)
KXIP qualify if they win both the remaining matches and SRH lose to RCB; if they lose one match and DC beat RR, RCB thrash SRH and KKR lose one of their remaining matches. Even then, they will need a very very very good run rate.