Bengaluru, April 19:Mumbai Indians (MI) finally managed to win a game in the Indian Premier League 2015 (IPL 8) as they edged Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) by 18 runs on Sunday night at M Chinnaswamy Stadium. (Twitter reactions to Pollard's plastered mouth)
MI ended their 4-match losing run after a superb batting effort where they scored 209/7 in 20 overs. In the run chase, RCB struggled at the start and fell short by 18 runs despite AB de Villiers' stunning 11-ball 41 and David Wiese's unbeaten 47 off 25. RCB needed 28 in the final over bowled by Kieron Pollard. But they were restricted to only 9 runs. RCB ended with 191/7 in 20 overs.
RCB, as always, depended on Chris Gayle to get them off to a brisk start but that did not happen. It was a scratchy innings from the big Jamaican despite getting two reprieves. He was finally dismissed for a forgettable 10 runs off 24 balls. RCB scored only 33/1 in opening 6 overs.
Captain Virat Kohli and Dinesh Karthik played some big shots as the required run rate kept mounting. Both departed with 18 each. De Villiers entered and started hitting from the first ball and his entertaining knock ended and it was curtains for RCB the moment he was caught at long-on by Pollard of Jasprit Bumrah.
De Villiers' innings, with a whopping strike rate of 372 was the only bright spot for RCB and their fans. However, Wiese and Iqbal Abdulla (20) looked like pulling off an unlikely win but that did not happen as it was too much work left to be done in the final 5 overs.
Harbhajan Singh took 3 wickets including his 100th IPL scalp in 100th game. Mitchell McClenaghan, Lasith Malinga and Jasprit Bumrah had one victim each. Harbhajan won the Man-of-the-match award.
Simmons and Chand hit half centuries
Earlier, Lendl Simmons and Unmukt Chand smashed strokeful half-centuries to power Mumbai to an imposing 209 for seven in 20 overs.
Opening the batting Simmons made 59 off 44 balls with the help of nine boundaries and two sixes, while Unmukt smashed his way to 58 off just 37 balls which included eight fours and two hits over the fence to set the stage for Mumbai's score.
Skipper Rohit Sharma also played a 15-ball 42-run cameo to help Mumbai's cause. He clobbered the RCB bowlers to all parts of the ground and in the process hit three fours and four huge sixes.
Towards the end, young Hardik Pandya used his long handle to great effect to pile up unbeaten 16 runs off just six deliveries for Mumbai.
For RCB, debutant David Wiese was the pick of the bowlers with figures of 44 for 33 from his four overs, while young leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal picked up two wickets giving away 28 runs.
Rohit went hammer and tongs towards the end as Mumbai scored 77 runs in the last five overs of the innings before he was caught by Weise off his own bowling.
Sent into bat, Pathiv Patel and Simmons gave a solid start to Mumbai's innings putting on 47 runs for the opening wicket in 35 balls. While Simmons looked at ease at the wicket, Parthiv looked a bit rusty.
The diminutive wicket-keeper batsman struck two sweetly timed boundaries during his short stay at the crease before he played on a David Wiese delivery on to the stumps in the sixth over. Simmons cut lose in the second over when he smashed Varun Aaron for three consecutive boundaries.
The West Indian then turned on the hit on Abu Nechim Ahmed, hitting the bowler for two delightful boundaries in the next over. After the loss of Patel, Simmons went into a shell but opened up in the ninth over onwards.
He first clobbered left-arm spinner Iqbal Abdullah for a massive six and then repeated the shot against Aaron. Simmons registered his fourth IPL fifty off just 36 balls. But soon after he top edged a Chahal delivery which was well taken by Aaron. Unmukt, however, kept up the tempo.
Soon after arriving at the crease he hammered Abdullah for two consecutive boundaries. Chand notched up his first half century of thie year's IPL with a boundary of Wiese, but soon lost his cool and top-edged a Chahal delivery to RCB captain Virat Kohli at long-off.