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IPL 10, Qualifier 1, MI v RPS – 5 Game Changing Moments

Pune book their spot in the IPL finals while Mumbai has to play against the winner of tomorrow's Eliminator.

Washington Sundar of Rising Pune Supergiant celebrates fall of Rohit Sharma's wicket
Washington Sundar of Rising Pune Supergiant celebrates fall of Rohit Sharma’s wicket. (Photo: IANS)

Rising Pune Supergiant faced the flamboyant Mumbai Indians at a jam-packed Wankhede Stadium today for the first qualifier of the IPL playoffs. Mumbai Indians would have been wary of their dismal record against the Steve Smith led side this season. Mumbai lost both their Maharashtra Derbys in the round-robin stage of the league.

Rohit Sharma was eager to change the record as he won the toss and put the visitors into bat. Mumbai was on top of the game until the 18th over as they kept an eye on the final spot. However, Dhoni and Tiwary had other ideas as they smashed 41 off the last two overs of the innings.

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RPS set a target of 162 in front of the in-form Mumbai Indians team on a relatively slower surface. As it turned out, Mumbai could not change their record against their neighbours this season as the home team lost for the third successive time in the tournament.

Some good bowling and agile fielding restricted the Mumbai Indians score to 142, as Rising Pune Supergiant ensured a berth in the IPL finals winning the first qualifier by 20 runs. That said, let us look at some of the game changing moment during the match which the momentum for either team.

1. Disastrous start from Supergiant

Rising Pune Supergiant opener Rahul Tripathi has been on song throughout the tournament and much was expected out of the right-hander. However, Tripathi did not trouble the scorers as he perished in the very first over.

Steve Smith joined Tripathi back in the pavilion soon after as he departed in the very next over. RPS were reduced to 9/2 at the end of the second over. The Mumbai bowlers only concede 33 runs by the end of the powerplays. Malinga and McClenaghan gave Mumbai Indians the ideal start to draw first blood in the qualifier.

2. Resurgence from Pune batsmen

Ajinkya Rahane and Manoj Tiwary stitched an important partnership of 80 runs to get RPS innings back on track. Rahane came back in form with a 43-ball 56. He hit 5 sixes and a maximum at a strike rate of 130. Manoj Tiwary ended up top scoring in the innings with his 48-ball 58. He hit four boundaries and a couple of maximums during his stay. He was well-supported by MS Dhoni during the later stage of the innings.

3. Overs from Bumrah and McClenaghan

The game was drifting away from the Rising Pune Supergiant as MS Dhoni and Tiwary were finding it difficult to accelerate during the death. While taking guard in the 18th over, the duo would have been aware that they hit only 2 boundaries in the last 7 overs.

However, it all changed in the 19th and 20th over as they exploded to contribute a whopping 41 runs off the last two overs against Bumrah and McClenaghan. MS Dhoni was only dealing in sixes as he smashed four maximums in the final two overs. Tiwary also hit a boundary and six off the bowling of McCleneghan to get the juices flowing. The duo powered their innings towards an improbable 162.

4. Unlucky Simmons and Rohit

Lendl Simmons and Rohit Sharma would be fuming with their respective dismissals as both did not have the rub of the green by their side. Rohit was at the receiving end of yet another howler from the Indian umpires. He clearly nicked one into his pad while trying to sweep Sundar and was adjudged leg before wicket.

Lendl Simmons was taking a start for a quick single as Parthiv Patel was attempting an on-drive against Shardul Thakur. The ball ricocheted off Thakur’s fingers and hit the stumps, catching Lendl Simmons off-guard. The two dismissals dented Mumbai’s chances big time.

5. Sundar creates panic in Mumbai’s dressing room

Mumbai Indians’ titanic top order fell into the spin trap of Washington Sundar, who iceberged their innings. He picked up three crucial wickets in the middle. Sundar may have been lucky to get the wicket of Rohit Sharma but clinched two other wickets by the names of Kieron Pollard and Ambati Rayudu. Mumbai could never get back into the game as they fell short of the required target by 20 runs and confirm their berth into IPL finals.

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