Mumbai Indians registered their first win in VIVO IPL 2019 after they held their nerve to defeat Royal Challengers Bangalore by six runs on Thursday night. In Match 7 played at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium, MI scored 187-8 batting first and then restricted the hosts to 181-5.
Put in to bat, the Mumbai Indians got off to a brisk start with the opening pair of Rohit Sharma and Quinton de Kock adding 50 runs in the first six overs. After they were separated in the seventh over, Rohit added 33 runs in the company of Suryakumar Yadav.
After Rohit was dismissed in the eleventh over, Yadav added 37 runs in the company of Yuvraj Singh (23 from 12 balls) – the bulk of the runs coming from the latter’s bat. MI suffered a collapse in the final five overs when they lost four wickets for five runs, before Hardik Pandya’s cameo shifted momentum back in their favour and took them to 187-8.
For RCB, the wickets were shared between Yuzvendra Chahal, Umesh Yadav and Mohammed Siraj.
In their chase, RCB had contributions from their top four, and had the chase under control. But their batsmen made mistakes, failed to convert starts and were guilty of poor shot selection which brought pressure onto themselves. Despite captain Virat Kohli’s 46 and AB de Villiers’ brilliant 70, RCB still finished short. RCB needed 17 off the final over, which was bowled by Malinga, and despite Shivam Dube hitting a six off the first ball of the over, the hosts could only collect four more runs off the remaining deliveries.
There was a bit of drama immediately after the match when replays indicated that Malinga had actually overstepped while delivering the last ball, but the Umpire did not call that a No Ball. One can only speculate what could have happened had that ball been called No Ball, and RCB had the opportunity to face the free-hit the following ball.
Standout batting performance
On Thursday night, Hardik Pandya (32* from 14 balls ) played the kind of knock he has established a reputation of being capable of. The Mumbai Indians all-rounder walked out to bat at the start of the seventeenth over, and there was one way he was going to go about things – find the boundary as frequently as possible. He was one from two balls at the end of the seventeenth, but in the remaining three overs he hit two fours and three sixes. Each of the three big hits were absolutely muscled – the first hit was into the stands at midwicket, the second one was hit straight down the ground like a rocket, and the final one hit to the roof of the stadium.
For RCB, AB de Villiers played yet another innings only he could have. He was put down first ball – Yuvraj Singh guilty of grassing the opportunity at slip – and he made MI pay for their largesse. Mr. 360 degrees did his thing; he muscled the ball down the ground, walked across and hit the ball through the leg-side, and had answers to almost everything the MI bowlers threw at him. He brought up his half-century off 31 balls, and carried on, remaining unbeaten on 70.
Notable Support Act – Batting
For MI, Rohit Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav made important contributions with the bat. Rohit started off aggressively, collecting four boundaries in the first two overs of the match, before depositing one into the stands in the fourth over. He was batting fluently when against the run of play he miscued a pull shot to be dismissed for 48; the MI skipper hit eight fours and one six in his 33-ball outing. Yadav hit four boundaries and a six, and scored 36 of his 38 runs through the leg-side. He would be Chahal’s third victim, dismissed in the sixteenth over.
After the embarrassing defeat in the season opener, one could see the intent in Kohli’s body language when he walked out to bat. The RCB captain made a fluent 46; his 32-ball knock contained six hits the boundary. Kohli was dismissed in the 14th over when, like his counterpart, he took on the best bowler in the opposition ranks (Jaspit Bumrah), and miscued a pull to be caught at midwicket.
Standout bowling performance
Jasprit Bumrah showed why he is rated the best bowler in T20 cricket. Every time MI wanted a breakthrough or the pressure to build, Bumrah was handed the ball, and he responded. After a poor start – when he conceded three consecutive boundaries of the last three balls of his first over – Bumrah came back strongly to finish with figures of 4-0-20-3. In his second over, he had Kohli caught off a short delivery, and in his third over (17th of the innings), he accounted for Shimron Hetmyer. Bowling the penultimate over, he conceded only four runs and picked up another wicket, leaving Lasith Malinga 17 runs to defend in the final over.
Yuzvendra Chahal showed yet again why he is rated highly in Indian cricket circles. At the Chinnaswamy Stadium, which is widely regarded as a bowler’s graveyard, the wily RCB leg-spinner returned figures of 4-38 – becoming the most successful bowler in the match.
Chahal outsmarted each of the four batsmen he dismissed. He strangled Quinton de Kock with a googly, tossed up wide leg-breaks and forced Yadav and Kieron Pollard into playing false shots. Even after Yuvraj Singh had hit him for three consecutive sixes, Chahal wasn’t afraid to throw the ball up; this time though, it was the googly, which Yuvraj attempted to send into orbit, but only got the outside half of the bat and carried as far as long off.
Stat of the Match:
Virat Kohli became the second batsman to score 5000 runs in the IPL. The only other batsman to reach the milestone previously was Suresh Raina.
Mumbai Indians: 187-8 (Rohit Sharma 48, Suryakumar Yadav 38, Hardik Pandya 32*, Yuzvendra Chahal 4-38) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore: 181-5 (Parthiv Patel 31, Virat Kohli 46, AB de Villiers 70*) by 6 runs.
Man of the Match:
Jasprit Bumrah, for his spell of 4-0-20-3.