IPL 2017 | Bowlers lead Mumbai to record third IPL crown

IPL 2017 | Bowlers lead Mumbai to record third IPL crown

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Mumbai Indians' bowlers, particularly Jasprit Bumrah (2/26) and Mitchell Johnson (3/26), kept their nerves under immense pressure to defeat Rising Pune Supergiant by 1 run helping their team win a record third IPL title. Defending a total of 130, Mumbai secured the win in a nail-biting finish.

Brief Scores: Mumbai Indians 129/8 (Krunal Pandya 47; Rohit Sharma 24; Jaydev Unadkat 2/19, Adam Zampa 2/32) beat Rising Pune Supergiant 128/6 ( Ajinkya Rahane 44, Steve Smith 51; Mitchell Johnson 3/26, Jasprit Bumrah 2/26) by 1 run. 

In what was going to be the epilogue of a brilliant season of the IPL, Mumbai got off to a perfect start when Rohit Sharma won the toss and elected to bat first knowing that six out of the nine finals had been won by the team batting first. While Mumbai didn’t tinker with the team that decimated Kolkata two nights ago, Pune, too, retained the same team played against Mumbai in the first Qualifier.

Unadkat puts Pune on top

Chasing the purple cap, Jaydev Unadkat made sure that Pune started on the front foot after claiming the wicket of Parthiv Patel on the first ball of his second over after giving away just three runs in the first one. Three balls later, the 25-year-old took a worldie off his own bowling to send Lendl Simmons packing as well. With Mumbai struggling at 9/2 after three overs, Rohit Sharma and Ambati Rayudu decided to slow things down and build a partnership. The former picked Kiwi pacer Lockie Ferguson as the weak link and smashed four boundaries in his first over to take the score to 32/2 at the end of the powerplay. Even though Steve Smith dismissed Rayudu with a brilliant direct hit, Mumbai appeared to have consolidated their position at the midway point with the scoreboard reading 56/3.

Krunal heroics take Mumbai to a respectable score

Just when Mumbai would have thought to put their foot on the accelerator, Adam Zampa came to the fore to undo all the good work that Rohit had done, dismissing both the Mumbai captain and his deputy in the 11th over to put the two-time champions into even more trouble. Hardik Pandya joined his brother at the crease but his visit was shortened when he was caught plumb in front of his stumps to leave Mumbai at 79/6 with six overs to go. Karn Sharma, too, didn’t last long as he was dismissed on the first ball of the next over and with Mumbai managing just 13 runs in the next three overs, the game appeared to be headed for a quick conclusion. However, Krunal, who ended up with 47 runs, and Mitchell Johnson, scored 37 runs off the last 18 balls to take the team score to a respectable 129/8.

Smith and Rahane stabilize innings after Tripathi dismissal 

Even though Pune found themselves in the driving seat, opener Rahul Tripathi showed his nervousness from the outset as he almost crashed into the IPL trophy. The high-flying youngster was unable to get going and was trapped by Jasprit Bumrah in the third over with the score at 17. Mumbai could have made it two wickets in as many overs but Krunal dropped a sitter at short extra cover to give Ajinkya Rahane another chance at the crease. By the end of the powerplay, Pune had settled down and even though the score was just 38 runs on the board, they appeared to be in complete control. Having seen the Mumbai collapse in the first innings, Rahane and Smith decided not to try anything risky and it wasn’t until the 10th over that the crowd got to see a boundary. With half the innings played, Pune needed 72 runs off 60 balls to secure their maiden IPL crown.

Johnson and Bumrah secure unlikely win for Mumbai

Pune seemed to be gaining momentum with both batsmen getting a boundary apiece in the next two overs that followed as the run rate started coming under seven an over. However, Rahane failed to pick up a slower delivery by Johnson and his chip found his way straight into the hands of the diving Pollard at long on. After Rahane’s dismissal, Pune, for the first time in the game, looked to be under pressure scoring just 12 runs in the next three overs as the run rate crept to 9.4 with five overs to go. Even though Pune scored 14 runs in the 16th over, Bumrah gave away just 3 runs in the next along picked the all-important wicket of MS Dhoni which resulted in the required run rate reaching double digits. However, Smith was not done yet. The Pune captain brought up his fifty whilst taking 19 runs off two overs to bring the equation to an achievable 11 off six balls. With Manoj Tiwary scoring a boundary off the first ball of Johnson’s over, it seemed like Mumbai’s efforts were going to go in vain. But keeping with the trend of the game, Mumbai found a way to claw their way back with Johnson dismissing Tiwary and Smith on consecutive balls. In the end, it wasn’t to be the fairytale end for the Dhoni-Smith team as they fell short of Mumbai’s score by 1 run. 

Mumbai are now the most successful team in the IPL history with three IPL titles followed by Kolkata Knight Riders and the returning Chennai Super Kings, who have won the silverware twice each.

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