Mumbai put Kolkata to the sword and qualify for the IPL 2017 final

Riding on Krunal Pandya’s 30-ball 45*, Mumbai Indians chased down 108 with 33 balls to spare and by doing so, have reached their fourth IPL final (2010, 2013, 2015, and 2017*). Rising Pune Supergiant await in Hyderabad to take on the boys from Mumbai, who were utterly dominant once again against Kolkata Knight Riders, outplaying them in all three departments and emerging as comfortable winners.

Chasing a small score, Mumbai did have a slight scare: they lost three wickets (Lendl Simmons, Parthiv Patel and Ambati Rayudu) inside the powerplay and had put just 34 runs on the board. But then, the senior Pandya joined skipper Rohit Sharma in the middle and together, this pair led their team towards the target.

Krunal had a lot more assuredness about him than his captain and a more accomplished batsman, Rohit. He chose the right balls to hit and connected well every time he had made his mind up to hit the ball. Krunal made the bulk of the contribution (34 to Rohit’s 20) in the 54-run fourth wicket partnership with Rohit. The Baroda all-rounder hit eight fours in his innings of 45* and barring one miscued hit to third man, Krunal caught the eye with his guides, slog sweeps and chipped drives behind and in front of square on the off side.

Rohit played an unnecessary shot against Nathan Coulter-Nile to get himself out, more than the bowler taking a wicket, for 26 off 24 balls. But while Pandya played the more attacking innings, Rohit lent stability to the chase by his sheer presence and got his team over the most crucial and testing phase of the innings.

Earlier in the evening, outstanding bowling performances from almost all bowlers helped Mumbai bowl Knight Riders out for 107, after Rohit Sharma had won the toss and unsurprisingly chose to field first. Only 11 boundaries (8×4 and 3×6) were hit by KKR, whose top order comprising Chris Lynn (4), Sunil Narine (10), Robin Uthappa (1), and Gautam Gambhir (12) was back in the dugout with the team score at just 31.

Only a 56-run sixth wicket partnership between Ishank Jaggi (28) and Suryakumar Yadav (31) lifted the Knight Riders innings from dire straits and gave them hope of reaching a total of around 140. However, after the second strategic timeout in the innings, Jaggi and Suryakumar fell in quick succession and with no contribution whatsoever from the tail, Kolkata folded up for the lowest score in an IPL playoff.

With their team five down for just 31 runs in seven overs, Jaggi and Suryakumar had to be circumspect not just early on but for much of the remaining 13 overs. But after predominantly looking to rotate strike during the early phase of their partnership, Jaggi and Suryakumar began to open their shoulders up and find the boundaries, particularly against the likes of Malinga and Krunal Pandya. Shot-making wasn’t easy on another slow Bangalore pitch, but having taken the time to familiarise themselves with the conditions, these two batsmen were able to collect runs a lot more frequently from over number 11 to 14, the first deliveries of which were hit for boundaries. Kolkata’s innings run rate never crossed the six runs per over mark and was a struggle all the way.

Much of the bowling, though, was exemplary from the Mumbai bowlers, who were aware of the strengths and weaknesses of every Kolkata batsman and most importantly, executed their plans to the letter. In the shortest format of the sport, you will rarely see a bowling unit be so organised and have specific game plans for every batsman.

For someone like Karn Sharma to bowl a four-over spell for just 16 runs and pick four wickets was a huge bonus from Mumbai’s perspective. The Railways leg-spinner, who was introduced into the attack while Narine and Gambhir were in the middle, bowled a nagging line and length and never allowed the batsmen to free their arms. Karn’s lines, lengths and variations were so immaculate that when the Kolkata batsmen went after him, they found themselves in vulnerable positions. Narine and Gambhir’s dismissals were examples of batsmen looking to attack the leg-spinner and being dismissed in the process.

Bumrah was another Mumbai bowler who was just too good for the Kolkata batsmen, who managed to score just seven runs in his three overs. The Baroda pacer was genuinely pacey and as always, bowled an accurate line and length. He delivered two crucial wickets of Lynn and Uthappa very early on in the innings, and consequently ensured that Kolkata didn’t get off to a flier. And then, having been brought back into the attack for his third spell, Bumrah took the most important wicket at that time (18th over), of Suryakumar, and helped Mumbai restrict the Knight Riders to 107.

Johnson and Malinga bowled good spells of fast bowling as well and played good supporting acts for the more threatening Bumrah and Karn. Karn Sharma, for taking 4/16 in his four overs, was awarded the man-of-the-match.

Mumbai take on Pune in the fourth Maharashtra derby of IPL 2017 in Hyderabad on Sunday (May 21), to decide the winner of the 10th edition of the Indian Premier League.

Mumbai v Kolkata, 2nd qualifier scorecard

Playing XIs

Knight Riders: 1. Gautam Gambhir (c), 2. Chris Lynn, 3. Robin Uthappa (wk), 4. Ishank Jaggi, 5. Ankit Singh Rajpoot, 6. Suryakumar Yadav, 7. Sunil Narine, 8. Piyush Chawla, 9. Nathan Coulter-Nile, 10. Umesh Yadav, and 11. Colin de Grandhomme

Indians: 1. Rohit Sharma (c), 2. Parthiv Patel (wk), 3. Lendl Simmons, 4. Ambati Rayudu, 5. Kieron Pollard, 6. Krunal Pandya, 7. Hardik Pandya, 8. Karn Sharma, 9. Mitchell Johnson, 10. Lasith Malinga, and 11. Jasprit Bumrah

Scores

Kolkata: 107/10 (Suryakumar 31; Karn 4/16 and Bumrah 3/7)
Mumbai: 111/4 (Krunal 45*; Chawla 2/34)

Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) innings (toss: Mumbai, who chose to bowl first)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate
Chris Lynn caught Pollard, bowled Bumrah 4 (8) 0 0 50.00
Sunil Narine stumped Parthiv, bowled Karn 10 (10) 0 1 100.00
Gautam Gambhir caught Hardik, bowled Karn 12 (15) 2 0 80.00
Robin Uthappa leg before wicket Bumrah 1 (3) 0 0 33.33
Ishank Jaggi caught Johnson, bowled Karn 28 (31) 3 0 90.32
Colin de Grandhomme leg before wicket Karn 0 (1) 0 0 0.00
Suryakumar Yadav caught Malinga, bowled Bumrah 31 (25) 2 1 124.00
Piyush Chawla caught Rayudu, bowled Johnson 2 (6) 0 0 33.33
Nathan Coulter-Nile caught Hardik, bowled Johnson 6 (4) 0 1 150.00
Umesh Yadav not out 2 (3) 0 0 66.66
Ankit Singh Rajpoot bowled Malinga 4 (7) 1 0 57.14
Extras: 7 (4 wides and 3 leg byes)
KKR’s total: 107/10 in 18.5 overs, at 5.68 runs per over
KKR’s fall of wickets: 5/1 (Lynn, 1.3), 24/2 (Narine, 4.4), 25/3 (Uthappa, 5.2), 31/4 (Gambhir, 6.5), 31/5 (de Grandhomme, 6.6), 87/6 (Jaggi, 14.5), 94/7 (Chawla, 16.1), 100/8 (Coulter-Nile, 16.5), 101/9 (Suryakumar, 17.1), and 107/10 (Rajpoot, 18.5)
Mumbai Indians (MI) bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate
Mitchell Johnson 4 13 28 2 7.00
Jasprit Bumrah 3 14 7 3 2.33
Lasith Malinga 3.5 11 24 1 6.26
Karn Sharma 4 12 16 4 4.00
Krunal Pandya 3 5 25 0 8.33
Hardik Pandya 1 3 4 0 4.00
Mumbai innings (target: 108 runs in 20 overs, at 5.40 runs per over)
Batsman Dismissal Runs scored No. of 4s No. of 6s Strike rate
Lendl Simmons leg before wicket Chawla 3 (6) 0 0 50.00
Parthiv Patel caught Uthappa, bowled Umesh 14 (9) 3 0 155.55
Ambati Rayudu bowled Chawla 6 (11) 0 0 54.54
Rohit Sharma caught Rajpoot, bowled Coulter-Nile 26 (24) 1 1 108.33
Krunal Pandya not out 45 (30) 8 0 150.00
Kieron Pollard not out 9 (7) 1 0 128.57
Batsmen who didn’t bat: Hardik Pandya, Karn Sharma, Mitchell Johnson, Lasith Malinga, and Jasprit Bumrah
Extras: 8 (4 wides and 4 leg byes)
MI’s total: 111/4 in 14.3 overs, at 7.65 runs per over
MI’s fall of wickets: 11/1 (Simmons, 1.3), 24/2 (Parthiv, 2.5), 34/3 (Rayudu, 5.4), and 88/4 (Rohit, 12.2)
Kolkata bowling
Bowlers Overs Dots bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Economy rate
Umesh Yadav 2.3 6 23 1 9.20
Piyush Chawla 4 9 34 2 8.50
Nathan Coulter-Nile 3 6 15 1 5.00
Sunil Narine 4 13 21 0 5.25
Ankit Singh Rajpoot 1 0 14 0 14.00

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