On a Roll: Chase Masters Mumbai Overhaul Gujarat’s 176 to Win Four in a Row

Match report

Mumbai Indians brushed aside Gujarat Lions, who had beaten them home and away last season, by six wickets in a high-scoring match at the Wankhede Stadium on Easter Sunday. Mumbai were the better side overall and deserved their win in the 16th match of IPL 2017. This is their fourth win in five matches and sees them go top of the IPL 2017 points table. Gujarat Lions’s 176/4 batting first proved insufficient against an in-form Mumbai batting line-up, which had its mainstays come to the fore and see the team home. MI’s win was witnessed by 18,000 underprivileged kids from NGOs.

Partnerships make the formidable chase easy

Against RCB, Mumbai’s top order fell like nine pins and they made heavy weather of the target 143.

On Sunday (April 16), however, chasing a much bigger total for stringing together four wins in a row, Mumbai’s batting line-up looked much more accomplished, played with composure and chased down 177 with relative ease. The key to chasing down targets is substantial partnerships and Mumbai got them when they needed them the most.

Parthiv Patel, like D Smith for Gujarat, was dismissed off the second legitimate delivery of the Mumbai innings. Although a setback in a formidable chase, Nitish Rana and Jos Buttler ensured that the freefall of Friday didn’t take place again. Rana was dropped on 9 by Jason Roy, but the Delhi batsman made the most of the good fortune and forged a solid partnership with Buttler for the second wicket (85 runs).

Rana fell in the 10th over of the innings, nicking behind a slower-un from Andrew Tye. But not before he had given the Mumbai a solid platform to chase down 177. Buttler, who didn’t get much of the strike early on in the hosts’s innings, got into his groove and started to hit the fours and the sixes regularly. But just when you thought that Buttler might convert his start into a substantial score, fell to Munaf Patel, whose well-disguised slower delivery brought about a mis-timed pull shot from the England batsman-wicketkeeper.

At 92/3 and with two new batsmen, Rohit Sharma and Kieron Pollard, in the middle, Gujarat definitely had a sniff. But as Rana and Buttler had done for the second wicket, Rohit and Pollard quickly settled down and started eating into the runs required for victory. Rohit, for a batsman who has struggled for form, had an assuredness about him and Gujarat’s bowlers were unable to bowl dots to Rohit. Pollard, the hero from two evenings ago, played the big shots at the right moments and was clinical in striking the ball down the ground.

Pollard fell in the penultimate over and when Mumbai needed 17 runs for victory. But the hosts, with no further troubles, got home with three balls to spare.

Mumbai substandard with the ball 

Having put Gujarat Lions into bat, Mumbai Indians’s bowling attack had a below-par evening. Lasith Malinga (1/51) and Jasprit Bumrah (0/45) performed uncharacteristically, going for 96 runs in their eight overs. This duo struggled to get their attempted yorkers right and were made to pay by some innovative batting from Brendon McCullum (64) and Dinesh Karthik (48*). In addition to bowling many full tosses, Malinga and Bumrah also strayed onto the pads and offered room outside the right-handers’s off stump, making life easier for the Gujarat batsmen.

While this duo struggled, Harbhajan Singh, Mitchell McClenaghan and Krunal Pandya continued from where they left off at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium against Royal Challengers Bangalore. McClenaghan provided the vital breakthrough of Dwayne Smith in the first over and went on to bowl an economical spell (4-12 dots-24-2). Harbhajan, likewise, varied the pace, line and length of his deliveries expertly and made himself tough to score off for McCullum and Raina.

Krunal bowled stump to stump, as usual, and was agile to the movements of Raina and McCullum. He wasn’t outthought by the batsmen on more than one occasion and Krunal gave Mumbai the control during the middle phase.

DK dazzles

Though two of Mumbai’s frontline pacers struggled, Dinesh Karthik, in particular, batted superbly and was the reason why Gujarat, who had gotten off to a really slow start, were able to reach 176/4 in 20 overs. Karthik is conspicuous for his body language and a touch of restlessness about himself, whether he is keeping or is in front of the stumps, batting. But on this evening, the way Karthik carried himself was perfect and his approach to the innings was ideal for the situation his team were in.

Karthik got himself going with a scoop over short fine-leg, off Hardik Pandya’s bowling, and the ball carried over the fence. Gujarat needed a substantial knock from Karthik and he provided them with one. He ran well between the wickets and wasn’t unsettled by the unconventional bowling from Bumrah and Malinga, two bowlers he played with as much ease as other MI bowlers. Even though Karthik scored his runs at a strike rate of 184.61, he struck only a couple of fours and sixes in a knock which spanned 26 balls.

Strange start by the Lions

Dwayne Smith’s dismissal in the innings’s second ball was a huge setback for Gujarat, who, as a result, did not get off to the kind of the start you usually expect with D Smith and Brendon McCullum opening the innings. Suresh Raina never got going and his inability to find the boundaries mounted the pressure on McCullum to hit the fours and sixes. But the problem for the Lions was that the former New Zealand captain himself was edgy and took the time to get into his groove. The first five overs produced only 30-odd runs for Gujarat and the start they made was the reason why the visitors ended with only 176/4 and not 10-15 runs more.

Mumbai Indians v Gujarat Lions (April 16), 16th Match Scorecard

Playing XIs

Mumbai: 1. Rohit Sharma (c), 2. Parthiv Patel, 3. Jos Buttler, 4. Nitish Rana, 5. Kieron Pollard, 6. Krunal Pandya, 7. Hardik Pandya, 8. Harbhajan Singh, 9. Mitchell McClenaghan, 10. Tim Southee/Lasith Malinga, and 11. Jasprit Bumrah

Gujarat: 1. Suresh Raina (c), 2. Brendon McCullum, 3. Dwayne Smith, 4. Dinesh Karthik, 5. Jason Roy, 6. Ravindra Jadeja, 7. Ishan Kishan, 8. Andrew Tye, 9. Praveen Kumar 10. Munaf Patel, and 11. Basil Thampi


Lions: 176/4 (B McCullum 64 and Karthik 48*; McClenaghan 2/24)
Indians: 177/4 (Rana 53 and Rohit 40*; Tye 2/34)

Result: Mumbai Indians beat Gujarat Lions by six wickets, and moved to the top of the IPL points table. Nitish Rana was awarded the man-of-the-match for his 53 (36).

Gujarat Lions (GL) Innings (toss: Mumbai, who chose to bowl first)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate
Dwayne Smith caught Rana, bowled McClenaghan 0 (2) 0 0 0.00
Brendon McCullum bowled Malinga 64 (44) 6 3 145.45
Suresh Raina caught Rohit, bowled Harbhajan 28 (29) 2 0 96.55
Ishan Kishan caught K Pandya, bowled McClenaghan 11 (14) 1 0 78.57
Dinesh Karthik not out 48 (26) 2 2 184.61
Jason Roy not out 14 (7) 2 1 200.00
Batsmen who didn’t bat: Ravindra Jadeja, Munaf Patel, Andrew Tye, Basil Thampi, and Praveen Kumar
Extras: 11 (2 no-balls, 8 wides and 1 leg bye)
GL’s total: 176/4 in 20 overs, at 8.80 runs per over
GL’s fall of wickets: 1/1 (D Smith, 0.2), 81/2 (Raina, 11.1), 99/3 (B McCullum, 13.4), and 153/4 (Kishan, 17.4)
Mumbai Indians (MI) Bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate
Mitchell McClenaghan 4 12 24 2 6.00
Lasith Malinga 4 6 51 1 12.75
Harbhajan Singh 4 9 22 1 5.50
Jasprit Bumrah 4 5 45 0 11.25
Krunal Pandya 3 4 18 0 6.00
Hardik Pandya 1 1 15 0 15.00
Mumbai Innings (target: 177 runs in 20 overs, at 8.85 runs per over)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate
Parthiv Patel caught Roy, bowled Praveen 0 (2) 0 0 0.00
Jos Buttler caught B McCullum, bowled Munaf 26 (24) 1 2 108.33
Nitish Rana caught Karthik, bowled Tye 53 (36) 4 2 147.22
Rohit Sharma not out 40 (29) 3 1 137.93
Kieron Pollard caught Jadeja, bowled Tye 39 (23) 2 3 169.56
Hardik Pandya not out 6 (3) 1 0 200.00
Batsmen who didn’t bat: Krunal Pandya, Harbhajan Singh, Jasprit Bumrah, Lasith Malinga, and Mitchell McClenaghan
Extras: 13 (10 wides and 3 leg byes)
MI’s total: 177/4 in 19.3 overs, at 9.07 runs per over
MI’s fall of wickets: 0/1 (Patel, 0.2), 85/2 (Rana, 9.2), 92/3 (Buttler, 11.1), and 160/4 (Pollard, 18.1)
Gujarat Bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate
Praveen Kumar 2.3 7 25 1 10.00
Basil Thampi 4 4 34 0 8.50
Munaf Patel 4 8 35 1 8.75
Andrew Tye 4 7 34 2 8.50
Ravindra Jadeja 4 6 34 0 8.50
Dwayne Smith 1 3 12 0 12.00


  1. Thank you Suhith for the well written report capturing the highlights of the match. And yes MIs are commendable and convincing over their performance in their last 4 matches. Player like Rohit Sharma and Pollard playing in their wickets is making a huge difference. And yes their fielding is improved impressively. And the bowlers are playing to the plan and things are falling well in place for the team. All they have to do is not to derail the momentum they got right now. Hope to see more from the team and the youngsters to be in the hunt. Coming to Gujarat Lions, they are reminding of the Delhi Daredevils of all these seasons, Team looks good in papers, individually each player got a lots of potential. They are failing to gel as a team, Captain Raina looks like he is in no mans land when trying to handling crucial situations. After Sachin Tendulkar and Yuvaraj Singh he is one of my all time favorites from Indian team and to see him struggle like this doesnt give you a good feel. Hope to see they pull up the throttle ASAP. Otherwise for my favorites its a good run so far. Lets go out and fight for the Trophy. Come on MIs……

    1. Mumbai Indians are the biggest contender for the IPL 2017 title, Charles, given their resourcefulness, experience and quality throughout their squad. But yes, these are still early days of the season, and in a league-cum-knockout tournament, you need to be on your game at the business end of the tournament/season. So, Mumbai have to put their heads down and keep playing well.

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