Mumbai Indians leapfrogged to the top of the IPL 2017 table, after completing a 5-wicket victory over Royal Challengers Bangalore.
Mumbai: Rohit Sharma (56 not out off 37 balls) and Mitchell McClenaghan (3/34) played vital roles as Mumbai Indians beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by five wickets here at the Wankhede Stadium on Monday. Their eighth win in the Indian Premier League 2017 powered MI to top of points table as RCB, following their eighth defeat, continued to languish at the seventh spot.
MI did not enjoy the best of starts as Aniket Choudhary removed Parthiv Patel on the first ball as the diminutive wicketkeeper-batsman was done in by the steep bounce the left-arm pacer generated. Jos Buttler (33 off 21 balls) did not let that hamper MI’s run-rate as he and Nitish Rana (27 off 28 balls) knocked down 61 runs off chase in 44 balls. However, just when MI looked in control of the game, Pawan Negi struck twice to dismiss the duo in quick succession.
MI were pushed on the backfoot as Kieron Pollard was holed out to deep midwicket by Travis Head off Yuzvendra Chahal and Krunal Pandya, who had suffered an injury while fielding, returned to the dressing room retired hurt. The onus was on firmly on MI skipper Rohit Sharma as MI needed 38 runs off last four overs to get past RCB’s total.
Karn Sharma’s dismissal on the third ball of the 17th over bowled by Shane Watson made the matters a little trickier of MI. However, Rohit and Hardik Pandya (14 not out off 9 balls) did not allow RCB to snatch a win.
Earlier, RCB’s batting performance against MI here on Monday pretty much summed up their IPL 2017 campaign; a few pretty spots before their batting failing to live up to the expectations. Mandeep Singh (17 off 13 balls) got a start, Virat Kohli (20 off 14 balls) looked in shape to get going, AB de Villiers (43 off 27 balls) offered hope but none, including Travis Head (12 off 15 balls) and Shane Watson (3 off 5 balls), sustained it for longer to help the team secure a big total. While Kedar Jadhav (28 off 22 balls) and Pawan Negi (35 off 23 balls) put up a brisk 54-run partnership, RCB could only score 162 on a track that was best suited for batsmen.
After electing to bat first against the home side, RCB lost Mandeep after he found the field in the deep as Karn Sharma (1/23), who replaced injured Harbhajan Singh in the team, gave MI their first breakthrough in the fourth over. Kohli fell next in the final over of powerplay as he mistimed a flick and gave his counterpart, Rohit, an easy catch as McClenaghan scalped his first wicket of the evening before adding two more to his name in the final over of RCB innings.
While Head got out cheaply, RCB’s hopes of an above average total were still intact as AB de Villiers attacked the MI bowlers. The South African, who averaged 57 with a strike rate of 192 at this venue over the last 5 seasons before this innings, entertained with 3 fours and 3 sixes before Krunal, who had earlier removed Head, dismissed AB for the fourth time in as many innings. Shane Watson followed AB to the dressing room as Jasprit Bumrah (1/33) disturbed the timber.