In a sensational end game that acquired shade of a fantasy in the final overs, Mumbai Indians (MI} regained the handsome IPL Trophy by a single run victory over Chennai Super Kings (CSK) on Sunday at Hyderabad.
The victory for MI came in the last ball of the final over and the man behind that moment was the pace bowler Malinga, whose magnificent yorker caught S. Thakur plumb in front of the wicket amidst a sea of emotions.
The climax would not have been possible for CSK but for the gallant innings by Shane Watson who plundered 20 runs in Malinga’s earlier over.
Two run outs by Dhoni when the score was 82 and then by Watson two balls from the last over requiring fours were tragic for CSK.
Thakur managed two runs but Malinga’s magnificent ball denied that one run and swayed the scales of victory for MI.
Opting to bat first after winning the toss, the MI team looked fairly comfortable In the early part scoring as many as 40+ runs less than five overs. The new ball overs Chahar and Thakur were not that menacing as they were expected to be but managed separate the opening pair. Yadav and Krishan offered some resistance but found the going tough against the spin of Harbhajan and Tahir.
Wickets began to tumble even as Pollard flexed his muscles to accelerate the scoring rate. He was unbeaten with 41 runs in 25 balls with three 4s and three 6s. He lacked support at the other end after H Pandya was trapped leg before by Deepak Chahar. The rest of the batting failed to help Pollard to enlarge the score and the MI team folded up at 149 for eight.
CSK had an excellent start with du Plesssis and Watson bringing in quick runs after being subdued in the early part of the innings against Bumrah and Malinga, But Krunal Pandya was subjected to some harsh treatment by the openers but he removed du Plessis caught behind for 26 runs. Suresh Raina struggled to come to terms with the situation and was faltering in his timing. His dismissal for eight runs, the other leading batsman Ambati Rayudu also did not stay long caught behind de Kock off Bumrah, who was in his elements with controlled swing and pace.
Dhoni and Watson added some quick runs but the former was declared run out after repeated review of the video by the third umpire. There was a huge disappointment when he was declared run out and many felt that the third umpire must have given the benefit of the doubt to the batsman.
Dhoni’s exit was big blow to the CSK in its chase. Bravo also did not inspire much confidence but Watson tore through the bowling plundering 20 runs in one over from Malinga with three 6s and two singles. CSK required only four runs to retain the trophy an attempt by a quick singles ended in a disaster for Watson run out by a throw from Krishan.
With Jadeja at the end Thakur picked up two abut that one superb delivery Malinga shattered the dreams for CSK. It was a classic case of so near and yet so far.
Mumbai Indians won the trophy last in 2017.
Jaspreet Bumrah was declared as the Man of the Match.
Predictably, the outcome was a great moment for Rohit Sharma and his men who showed no inhibitions in exhibiting their delight. The CSK skipper Dhoni admitted that the team’s batting never clicked for the major part of the tournament.