Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Mumbai Indians match was touted as the first game between two top class teams of IPL and a repeat of high scoring match between Chennai Super Kings and Kings XI Punjab was expected. Alas!! It turned out to be a low scoring match, although a thriller indeed. The bowlers were supposed to be victims, instead they feasted on batsmen. MI lost 9 wickets, while Bangalore lost three quick wickets to recover from the challenge posed by strong MI bowling. While the likes of Hussey, Rohit, Rayudu, Anderson, Kohli and Yuvraj struggled, likes of Starc, Albie Morkel, Chahal, Dinda, Malinga, Zaheer, Harbhajan were the heroes of the match.
MIs Batsmen score 115/9
Being sent to bat, Mumbai’s openers got one life each in first 8 balls, with easy catches dropped. Still that did not help. Michael Hussey was the first to go as Chahal, who dropped him in first over, could hold another easier chance given by Hussey. Morkel and Starc were amazing. Irony was that Rayudu coming at No. 3 also got a reprieve when wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel could not implement a simple run out chance. But after that it was all about RCBs fielding. Maddison, who dropped Tare held the other chance as MI went to 52/2 in 7th over. Then, the fielding was exceptional. Bowling kept on getting better. As a result MI had to be content with 115 only. They would have felt lucky to play complete 20 overs, such was the quality of bowling and fielding. Rayudu was again the highest scorer, like first match, another slow innings of 37-ball 35 runs. Anderson with 19-ball 18 runs was the second best.
RCBs bowling will not be considered so weak after this game. Starc (2/21), Morkel (1/23 in 3 overs) gave exceptional start. Aaron (2/30) continued the pressure. The Player of the match of last game Chahal (2/17) bowled better, and surprisingly Dinda (1/14) was their most economic bowler. Yuvraj gave 6 runs in an over.
Before they started to bat, everyone pondered how many overs will they take to win. After 4 overs the question turned to will they even manage to win? Such was the start by Zaheer, Harbhajan and Malinga. Zaheer (2/21) and Harbhajan bowled the first two overs, as Malinga replaced Zaheer and bowled out puzzled Maddinson in third over. From the other end, Zaheer bowled one of his best overs in IPL as he had Kohli and Yuvraj out for duck in a space of 3 balls. After 3.5 overs, the score read 17/3. Parthiv Patel survived and continued to play a good supporting role, but after that the contest was completely between MI and AB de Villiers.
After reaching 50 in 10 overs, RCB needed another 66 runs. MI waited for AB de Villier’s wicket. In between, Parthiv played an important knock as he took pressure off AB de Villiers. After 15 overs they needed only 24 runs and had 7 wickets still in hand. For a change, Parthiv Patel (45-ball 57 runs with 7 4s) had a strike rate above AB de Villiers (48-ball 45 runs with a six and 3 4s). Finally, the MI bowlers failed to collect any more wickets and RCB won with 15 overs to spare as Parthiv Patel and AB de Villiers added unbeaten 99 runs for the 4th wicket.
Parthiv Patel: Player of the Match
There were many Player of the match contender. Low scores made bowlers the obvious contender. But contribution from Parthiv Patel and AB de Villiers was also exceptional, specially in a match where bowlers from both teams created havoc. Starc (2/21) for the start he gave, Chahal for the key wickets of Rohit Sharma and Pollard and a spell of 2/17. The team with one of the best bowlers of IPL, by record failed, while the team with weaker bowling attack emerged champion. Parthiv Patel is the Player of the match among the great names that two teams shared. Good Going for RCB.