De Villiers, Kohli power Bangalore to victory


It will be a huge challenge for Mumbai Indians batsmen as they have to score 11.75 runs per over.

Powered by a swashbuckling 133 off just 59 balls by AB de Villiers and a classy 82 from skipper Virat Kohli, Royal Challengers Bangalore trounced Mumbai Indians by 39 runs in an IPL cricket match in Mumbai on Sunday.

South Africa’s de Villiers, who came in at the fall of opener Chris Gayle’s wicket, simply tore apart the MI bowling as he hammered four sixes and 19 fours on a superb batting track at the Wankhede Stadium as RCB rattled up 235 for 1.

De Villiers and Kohli, who faced 50 balls and struck 4 sixes and six fours, completely dominated the MI attack during their all-time IPL record partnership of 215 in 102 balls, which bettered the previous all—time best of 206 between Adam Gilchrist and Shaun Marsh for Kings XI Punjab against RCB in 2011 at Dharamsala.

Chasing the huge score, the third 200-plus total by RCB this season and the season’s highest total by all teams, MI made a brave effort before finally ending up with 196 for 7.

Opener Lendl Simmons made an unconquered 68, studded with 5 fours and 3 sixes in 53 balls and also featured in a breezy stand of 70 in 37 balls for the third wicket with Kiron Pollard (49), but the target was too stiff to scale.

The victory pushed RCB up in the standings to no. 4 with 13 points to their credit with three games in hand, a position from which they seem well—poised to enter the play-offs.

MI, on the other hand, had to remain content with 12 points from as many games to stay in the sixth spot with two more matches in hand.

The day belonged in large measure to de Villiers, who struck his second ton in IPL history, who was complemented in superb fashion by Kohli, who was lucky to be let off by Harbhajan Singh when on 6.

MI had in fact looked to have had things under control when they restricted RCB to 39 for 1 at the end of the power—play overs before things fell apart as de Villiers, in particular, went hammer and tongs first at the spin duo of Harbhajan Singh and Jagadeesha Suchith.

Harbhajan was carted for 15 runs in each of his two overs and then was not called upon to bowl at all even though all other bowlers, barring Lasith Malinga, were taken to the cleaners by the two batsmen. Strangely Kieron Pollard did not bowl a single ball even when the mayhem was on.

The worst bowling efforts came from Jasprit Bumrah, who had replaced R Vinay Kumar in the eleven and served up juicy full—tosses for de Villiers and Kohli to feast upon, and Hardik Pandya. Both these bowlers conceded over 50 runs.

MI, in fact, were lucky early on to see the back of Chris Gayle after captain Rohit Sharma dropped a skier at mid—on off Kiwi paceman Mitchell McClenaghan. In the same over Harbhajan floored Kohli in slip cordon.

Simmons brought off a flying catch at short third man in the next over from Malinga to send the dangerous Gayle back but the dropped chance of Kohli was to prove expensive.

From 88 for 1 after ten overs, the score jumped to 147 for one after 15 with Harbhajan and Suchith — who ended up wicket less after conceding 35 runs in three overs — unable to exercise any control.

De Villiers raced to his century — the third by all batsmen this season — in just 47 balls by striking successive sixes off Bumrah who was carted for another six by Kohli in the 17th over in which 25 runs came.

Pandya was carted around for 19 runs in the 18th and after Malinga was hit for 14 in the penultimate over, Pandya was strangely asked to bowl the last in which 17 runs came.

The last four overs yielded a staggering 75 runs.

MI started the stiff run-chase well with Parthiv Patel hammering RCB’s biggest threat Mitchell Starc for three fours in his second over before he was run out for 19.

Captain Rohit Sharma too left after a 13-ball 15, to leave West Indians Simmons, who again impressed in the opening slot, and the big-hitting Pollard stitching a half century stand.

But the asking rate kept climbing and Pollard, who struck 2 sixes and six fours, fell in attempting another big heave with 103 needed in 34 balls and the MI’s challenge virtually ended even though Simmons battled on bravely.

cerdit : theh indu






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