Chasing for a spot in the playoffs, the Royal Challengers Bangalore took on the Mumbai Indians at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai. The home side, after a morale-boosting 6-wicket win over Chennai Super Kings, had made their way to the top 4 with five consecutive wins. RCB, on the other hand, came into the game after a thumping 138-run win over Kings XI Punjab at home. In their previous meeting at Bengaluru, the Mumbai side got the better of the Royal Challengers.
AB de Villiers was at his devastating best as he scored a 59-ball 133* and helped RCB post 235/1. In reply, the Mumbai Indians scored 196/7 and fell short by 39 runs. RCB are just a win away from qualifying into the playoffs after three years.
Chris Gayle falls early, Kohli and de Villiers add quick runs:
Virat Kohli won the toss and elected to bat first in the sweltering Mumbai weather. Both Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli were dropped early in the third over by Rohit Sharma and Harbhajan Singh respectively. However, Gayle failed to cash in on the dropped chance as Lasith Malinga dismissed him for 13 in the next over. Fellow West Indian Lendl Simmons pulled off a spectacular catch to get rid of the big man.
AB de Villiers came in at no. 3 and turned the heat on for the Royal Challengers by scoring some quick boundaries and getting the innings run-rate to 9 runs an over. Virat and AB did not allow the spin duo of Harbhajan Singh and J Suchith to settle and plundered as many as 65 runs from their 5 overs. The visitors cruised along and brought up the team hundred in the 11th over itself and de Villiers raced to his half century in just 29 balls.
AB de Villiers blasts ton, RCB make a mockery of Mumbai bowling
AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli continued to smash the Mumbai bowlers all over the park. While the former contributed most to the damage, Kohli too contributed with his range of shots. The South African batting powerhouse got to his second IPL hundred in 47 balls and continued to maul the opposition with his brilliant use of the crease and improvisation. Both the batsmen added 215 runs for the 2nd wicket and helped RCB posted a massive 235/1 in 20 overs. AB de Villiers finished on an unbeaten 133 from 59 balls, studded with 19 fours and 4 sixes. The skipper too scored a commendable 82* off 50 balls and at the same time provided an excellent supporting to de Villiers.
Simmons and Patel take on Starc, RCB pick up important wicket:
With such a huge total to chase, the Mumbai Indians could not afford to just play Mitchell Starc out with respect. Instead, the opening pair of Lendl Simmons and Parthiv Patel decided to take risks and scored boundaries off the Aussie pacer. he went for 23 runs in his initial 2 overs. However, Patel’s stay at the crease was short-lived as he was run-out by Virat Kohli on 19.
Simmons and Pollard lead spirited fightback:
Mumbai skipper Rohit Sharma too departed in a hurry after scoring a couple of boundaries. Kieron Pollard came in at no. 4 and he began to take the attack to the opposition with his power hitting. He along with Lendl Simmons brought some hope for Mumbai with a 70-run partnership for the third wicket. Just when it seemed that these two would take the game to the opposition, Sreenath Aravind struck to dismiss Pollard (49) caught in the deep by Mitchell Starc.
Post Pollard’s dismissal, none of the Mumbai batsmen seemed to pose a threat to the Royal Challengers. So while, the home side did manage a decent 196/7, the score was not sufficient to get them past the line. Lendl Simmons remained unbeaten at 68 from 53 balls, but the knock to remember came from AB de Villiers who was adjudged the man of the match for his brilliant batting.
Royal Challengers Bangalore 235/1 (AB de Villiers 133*, Virat Kohli 82*, Lasith Malinga 1-27) beat Mumbai Indians 196/7 (Lendl Simmons 63*, Kieron Pollard 49, Harshal Patel 2-36) by 39 runs