When Chris Gayle fell in the fourth over, the entire Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai rose in unison because they thought Gayle’s departure had paved the way for Mumbai’s sixth victory in a row. But the fans could not have been more wrong on a shocking Sunday because what followed thereafter was a batting feast, like of which Mumbai had never witnessed at the Wankhede. The visitors from Bangalore did not lose any further wicket as AB de Villiers came up with a murderous batting display that drowned the Mumbai bowlers in a huge glut of runs. With the vicious de Villiers going on whacking clinically from one end, the 50-ball 82 from Virat Kohli went literally unnoticed. There was hardly a mishit from ABDV’s bat as the second wicket stand of 215 became an IPL record and de Villiers finished with 133 not out off 59 balls at a whopping strike rate of over 225. Nineteen boundaries and four sixes emanated from the South African’s bat as RCB ended their 20 overs at a monumental 235/1. There was little Mumbai Indians could do in the chase that followed. From the first ball, they looked for nearly 12 runs per over and despite Lendl Simmons and Kieron Pollard trying the impossible, Mumbai fell 39 short of RCB’s mountainous challenge.
RCB’s star has been on the rise of late and Virat Kohli did not flinch in electing to bat after winning the toss because in Gayle, de Villiers and himself, RCB has tremendous potential in raising huge scores. The start for them was slow as only 20 runs came until the fourth over and Chris Gayle got out. The MI supporters were ecstatic since the West Indian is still regarded as the one batsman around whom the RCB batting revolves. Virat Kohli was joined by AB de Villiers but the overwhelming feeling was still in favor of the Mumbai Indians because Lasith Malinga had bowled a wicket maiden and Gayle was out of the way. The fifth over from Jagdeesha Suchit went for 9 runs and de Villiers only scored 2 off the 7 balls that he had faced by then. When the 7th over ended, RCB had scored 39/1 with Kohli on 17 off 15 and de Villiers on 14 off 15. No one knew what would come next.
Then the complexion of the game began to change as Harbhajan yielded 30 off his first two overs and with Suchith leaking 12 of the 9th, RCB raced to 88/1 after 10 overs. The 11th and 12th overs went for 13 runs each and panic gripped Mumbai bowlers as de Villiers’ bat became overly productive. He was unstoppable now and with Virat Kohli also joining the onslaught, the flow of runs continued. The 17th over went for 25 runs and it brought de Villiers’ century in 47 balls after Kohli had reached his 50 in the earlier over off 39 balls. The massacre didn’t stop until the penultimate ball of the 20th over. RCB reached 235/1 to record a 215-run second wicket stand, highest for any wicket in IPL’s history.
The 236-run chase for Mumbai was never easy as they needed to score at nearly 12 runs an over from the outset. Though Partiv Patel and Rohit Sharma fell early, Lendl Simmons continued in the company of Kieron Pollard. These two raised a semblance of hope as long as their partnership lasted. But once Pollard fell for a 24-ball 49 in the 15th over, it was curtains for Mumbai. Ambati Rayudu struck some blows in his short 4-ball innings to make 14 but after that the writing on the wall was clear. Simmons carried his bat as the top scorer for 68 off 53 balls but the target was too stiff for MI. Regardless, Mumbai Indians could still manage to reach 196/7 in the end but they lost the match by 39 runs.
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