The capitals of Delhi were sailing at one point. But the Mumbai Indians’ never say die attitude brought the game to the final. Shikhar Dhawan and Rishabh Pant started in quick succession to make things tense for the Capitals, but Jasprit Bumrah played two without balls to relieve the pressure. Additionally, MI had just 137 points on the board, and Shimron Hetmyer and Lalit Yadav kept their cool to secure a six-wicket victory with five balls remaining.
The Capitals’ victory was even more honorable as it was their first game in Chennai. The conditions were tricky, which MI experienced, as it was their fourth game in Chepauk. But the Capitals were the best team of the night.
Mishra rolls back the years
Under favorable conditions, Amit Mishra can still spin a web. At 38, international cricket probably got around him, but on a ‘gripping’ surface the leg spinner showed his worth. It was only Mishra’s second game in this year’s IPL and he made an eye-opening contribution.
Rohit Sharma took a little while to get into the groove but once settled in the MI captain was playing like a prince.
An upside down loft drive for six off Kagiso Rabada was gorgeous. Pant hastily brought Mishra, inside the Powerplay, to stem the tide.
He began by conceding consecutive four to Suryakumar Yadav. But when Mishra returned for his second spell, his dream run began. Rohit jumped out of his crease, but the bowler had held his leg-leg back a little. The batsman had to reach out for the ball and ski it to Steve Smith long term.
– Capitals of Delhi (@DelhiCapitals) April 20, 2021
A few bullets later, a similar delivery represented Hardik Pandya. The all-rounder succeeded, but the crafty leggie had beaten him in the air.
A Kieron Pollard trapped visibly upright. Mishra did not give rhythm to the drummers and spun the ball. Suddenly MI was 84/6 after 12 overs with the cream of their stick back in the hut.
Scores of around 150 turned out to be even at this point, which the reigning champions had successfully defended.
On Tuesday, however, Mishra knocked out all of MI’s big hitters and innovators to stymie their death push. Ishan Kishan was playing reasonably well, partnering up with Jayant Yadav and preparing well for a back-end slog. But he fell prey to Mishra’s variation of pace – faster delivery that almost scared him. The southpaw stuck his bat and played the ball on his stumps. The veteran spinner finished with 4/24 in four assists.
Before that, at the start of the heats, two cricket champions canceled each other. The honors were even between Rohit and Ravichandran Ashwin until the former stood up and delivered a magnificent six on additional cover to a carrom ball.
The capitals keep their cool
Dhawan survived a marginal decision in four, in the very first course of the Capitals chase. Hardik had pulled off a stunning dive but the TV referee judged the ball to have hit the ground. Against a modest total, Capitals had to avoid a collapse. A second stand of 53 points between Dhawan (45) and Smith (33) laid the groundwork for their victory. The first stayed until the 15th to make sure there was no confusion between the intermediaries.