The Mumbai Indians added one more win to their already impressive record against the Chennai Super Kings after they registered a 46-run win at the MA Chidambaram Stadium on Friday night. MI’s win was their second over CSK in VIVO IPL 2019 and took them to second in the standings. It also ended CSK’s seven-match winning streak at their home ground.
MI posted a modest 155-4 riding on the back of captain Rohit Sharma’s well-compiled 67. In the second half of the match, the MI spinners strangled the home team batsmen before Lasith Malinga polished off the middle and lower order.
In the evening, MI were put in to bat by CSK’s stand-in skipper Suresh Raina. After Quinton de Kock’s cameo of 15 from 9 balls, Rohit Sharma and Evin Lewis took them to 45-1 at the end of the powerplay. In the next eleven overs the visitors added 77 runs for the loss of three wickets, while Hardik Pandya and Kieron Pollard added 33 runs in the final three overs – 17 of those runs coming off the final over bowled by Dwayne Bravo. The second-wicket partnership of 75 between Rohit and Lewis (32 from 30 balls) would the highest partnership in the entire match.
The Super Kings never got going in their run-chase; the home team batsmen struggled to cope with the slow surface and perished one after another, attempting to play the aggressive strokes. Except opener Murali Vijay, who made 38 on his return to the team, none of the other batsmen in CSK’s top six got into double digits; the hosts were reduced to 60 or 5 at the half-way stage and lost their remaining five wickets for 43 runs. The Super Kings were bowled out for 109 in 17.4 overs.
For the Mumbai Indians, the wickets were shared between Malinga, the Pandya brothers, Jasprit Bumrah and debutant Anukul Roy. MI’s spin trio were miserly and returned combined figures of 9-0-39-3.
Standout batting performances
Rohit Sharma opened his account in style, creaming an outswinger from Deepak Chahar through cover. Despite playing that flowing cover drive early on, the MI skipper seemed to have assessed the conditions very well and settled down for the long haul. Rohit generally focussed on picking the singles, and collected the occasional boundary when the loose delivery came his way. He crawled to 20 from 17 balls at the end of the seventh over at which point he decided to cut loose. In the eighth, he collected two sixes off Harbhajan Singh – one over midwicket and the other over long-on. He then collected boundaries off Mitchell Santner and Dwayne Bravo, and got to his half-century in the thirteenth over – consuming 37 balls to get to the milestone.
It wasn’t until the 16th over that Rohit cut loose again; this time he took 15 runs off the leg-spinner Imran Tahir, which included two fours and a six. The MI skipper was dismissed in the seventeenth over when his mishit found the fielder at long-on; Rohit made 67 – his first half-century of the season, and his 48-ball knock contained four boundaries and three sixes.
Standout bowling performances
The left-arm spinners on both sides were the standout bowlers for their respective sides. Krunal Pandya (2 for 7) and Mitchell Santner (2 for 13) bowled beautifully. It was as if both bowlers had been told to bowl on a small piece of cloth laid down on the pitch – such was their accuracy. Krunal bowled 12 dot balls in the three overs he bowled, while Santner bowled 15 dot balls in his four overs.
Notable Support Act – Bowling
On a slow surface, Lasith Malinga adapted well and used the cutters well to collect four wickets – his best returns against CSK. The Sri Lankan dismissed Shane Watson in the very first over – the batsman flicking a leg-stump half volley straight to the man at short fine-leg; whether it was a dismissal planned and set-up, one will never know. After a quiet second over, he returned to bowl the sixteenth and eighteenth and hastened the end of CSK’s innings. It was in this spell that he switched to bowling the cutters; first, he deceived Dwayne Bravo with a slower delivery and held on to the return catch, and then dismissed Harbhajan Singh and Mitchell Santner in the eighteenth over to finish with figures of 3.4-0-37-4.
Harbhajan Singh’s figures at the end of the powerplay read 3-0-9-0; the CSK off-spinner had maintained outstanding accuracy in this period. He should have had the wicket of Evin Lewis, who feathered an outside edge in the sixth over, but neither CSK’s stand-in wicket-keeper Ambati Rayudu nor Harbhajan himself, appealed for a wicket. Harbhajan’s figures were spoilt in his final over when Rohit hit him for two sixes – one of those a mishit which had just enough distance to take it over the line; he finished with figures of 4-0-23-0.
Stat of the Match
The Chennai Super Kings’ 109 would be their lowest total in IPL matches at the MA Chidambaram Stadium.
Mumbai Indians: 155-4 (Rohit Sharma 67, Evin Lewis 32, Mitchell Santner 2-13) defeated
Chennai Super Kings: 109 in 17.4 Overs (Murali Vijay 38, Laith Malinga 4-37, Krunal Pandya 2-7) by 46 runs.
Man of the Match
Rohit Sharma, for his 48-ball 67.