Match 52: The table toppers Mumbai Indians crushed RCB by 57 runs on their home turf and the big loss meant their run rate took a beating but remained just high enough to make them favourites for the semi final berth. The match was delayed by an hour due to a couple of low-intensity blasts outside the stadium but once the match started the crowd were treated to some power hitting by the Mumbai boys who posted 191 on the board which in the end proved too much for the boys in red.
Bangalore Royal Challengers Innings
Although the Bangalore team had earlier chased down scores of 180 on a couple of occasions, it was going to be tough chase tonight as they were up against a team who has not done much wrong this season. Chasing 191, the Bangalore team never looked in the hunt as they kept losing wickets and the run rate never crossed 7 when the required rate was nearly 10 right from the offset. Both the openers Kallis and Pandey were out in the powerplay but knowing the depth that the Challengers have Mumbai Indians didn’t relax and kept taking wickets at regular intervals. By the time Harbhajan Singh removed both Kevin Pietersen and Rahul Dravid, the required-rate had zoomed to 13 which put a lot of pressure on the big hitters Robin Uthappa and Ross Taylor. Both of them were done in by slower balls from Pollard and Fernando. Bangalore knew they couldn’t win the match but they had to reduce the margin of defeat so that their net run rate does not fall behind CSK or Delhi. PHOTOS
Mumbai Indians Innings
Earlier Sachin won the toss and decided to bat first. He walked onto the field with his fourth opening partner McLaren in as many matches which didn’t do any good as they got off to a very sedate start. A low catch by Ross Taylor at deep square leg sent back Sachin of the last ball of the powerplay. Mclaren could have been dismissed the very next ball had Dravid not dropped a sitter off Pankaj Singh. The innings which was not going anywhere got some impetus with Rayudu playing an entertaining knock of 46 from 27 balls. The very economical Anil Kumble was on the receiving end as Rayudu sent him over the ropes in consecutive balls. Kallis came back to remove Rayudu but that brought the big man Pollard to the crease who played a little cameo 20(7) which included 3 consecutive 6’s off Pankaj Singh. However Kumble who was not having a great time got him plumb in front with a slider. Mclaren’s vigil finally ended when he tried to reverse sweep the first ball from Pieterson and was ruled out by the umpire. The crowd must have thought their boys had done enough to restrict the opposition to 160 but Duminy continued his love affair with the Chinnaswamy Stadium with a superb cameo of 42 from just 19 balls. He took on his South African team mate Kallis in the 18th over smashing 19 runs. The last 9 overs went for 113 runs. PHOTOS
Player of the Match: Ryan Mclaren