On Wednesday night MI grabbed a win to make a place in IPL finals where they will meet RPS to fight for the IPL 10 title. Mumbai Indians beat Kolkata Knight Riders by six wickets as they had a modest total to chase. Earlier, Kolkata Knight Riders, after put into bat, were bundled out for 107. Chris Lynn and Sunil Narine didn’t get going for the hosts, and the middle-order too was back in the hut without making a substantial contribution. For Mumbai, Jasprit Bumrah (3/7) made early inroads and then it was Karn Sharma (4/16) show in the middle overs.
Here’s a look at five talking points from the thrilling contest.
The responsibility to provide a good start was on the shoulders of Sunil Narine and Chris Lynn. However, they failed to do so courtesy of some tight bowling by MI. MI bowlers did not allow the destructive duo at the top to get away by bowling a tight line by cramping KKR batsman for room. Jasprit Bumrah who bowled the fifth over of the innings let just two runs of his couple of overs in the powerplay and trapped Robin Uthappa LBW. The initial collapse of the KKR batting was a huge setback for the Gambhir-led side and they could not recover from thereon.
Robin Uthappa’s failure
Robin Uthappa has not had a good outing this season. He first lost his opening place to Chris Lynn and later failed to impress in the new found number 3 spot. The fact that he has also played quite a few loose shots adds to KKR’s collapse. On a day when KKR needed him to step up, Uthappa failed yet again.
Karn Sharma spins the web
Leg-spinner Karn Sharma, on Friday, was chosen ahead of the experienced Harbhajan Singh. However, he repaid the faith with a brilliant spell of 4/16 which put his side in the IPL final. This was also his career-best IPL returns of 4 for 16.”T20 is all about momentum,” Karn said in the post-match press conference. “We started well in the first six overs… For Narine we tried to bowl at the stumps. He is a very good hitter straight. We have different plans for different batsmen. That is what I did.”
Rohit Sharma guides his side
Rohit Sharma started the chase with a good boundary and that set things in motion for the Mumbai Indians. Krunal Pandya and Rohit Sharma combined well to put the chase back on track. After losing three early wickets, Rohit played a captain’s innings which saw his side through to the third IPL final.
Krunal Pandya rises to the occasion
Against KKR, in the IPL eliminator, Krunal Pandya proved his mettle as he hit eight boundaries during his knock and kept the scoreboard ticking with quick singles. His knock of 45 from 30 saw him score runs all over the park at a strike rate of 150 on a pitch that was slow and where the ball was not coming onto the bat. He preferred safe shots, even while taking the aerial route he chose the gaps smartly.
However, what was also visible was his ability to keep composure and play safe and proper cricketing shots. Though he did take the bowlers to the stands but those were calculated risks.