Mumbai Indians end title drought

The Statesman

KOLKATA, 26 MAY: Mumbai Indians defeated Chennai Super Kings by 23 runs to win IPL 2013 and claim their maiden title in this format of the game at a packed Eden Gardens here today. Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s unbeaten knock of 63 off 45 balls failed to help Chennai Super Kings reach their target of 149.
Defending their score of 148, the Mumbai Indians bowlers got the start they were looking for as Lasith Malinga struck in the first over itself, taking Michael Hussey and Suresh Raina’s wicket in the fourth and fifth balls respectively. A yorker length ball swinging back into the batsman had Hussey’s wickets all over the place. Next up to the crease, Suresh Raina nudged a quick bouncer to Dwayne Smith at backward-square-leg. Malinga almost claimed his hat-trick with Badrinath edging it a little short of second slip. Chennai Super Kings were reeling at two runs for the loss of two wickets at the end of the first over.
Mitchell Johnson also got into the act by having Badrinath edge the ball right into the hands of the keeper. At the end of the second over, Mumbai Indians were five for the loss of three wickets.
Dwayne Bravo chipped an easy one off Mitchell Johnson at mid-on, heading back to pavilion 15 runs from 16 balls to his credit.
Chennai Super Kings were 35 for four at the end of 6 overs. Harbhajan Singh, brought into the attack in the seventh over, sent Ravindra Jadeja packing for a duck with Chennai needing 108 runs from 72 balls. MS Dhoni and Albie Morkel were at the crease. Morkel and Dhoni added 18 runs to the board, before Ojha had Morkel bowled at ten runs.
It only got worse as Harbhajan had Morris out leg-before for the fourth duck of the innings. Dhoni tried to anchor the innings along with Ashwin, and refused the odd singles to retain strike and go for the big shots. He managed to bung in a few sixes to take his side to a point where they needed 56 runs from 24 balls.
Ashwin, however, chipped one to the mid-wicket fielder, to leave the Chennai Super Kings at 99 for 9, at the end of the 18th over. Without much support at the non-striker’s end, Dhoni could take his side only to 125 with two sixes off the last over.
Electing to bat, Mumbai Indians found themselves in a tight spot right from the start with their openers failing to make a mark.
Dwayne Smith hit a four through the point area, only to be given leg-before in the next delivery that landed on the off-stump and moved back in. Morkel had Aditya Tare bowled for a duck in the first ball of the second over, and then caught-and-bowled Rohit Sharma in the fourth over to leave Mumbai Indians tottering at 18 for three.
Mumbai, however, had man of the match Pollard to thank for taking them to a challenging score as he single-handedly took on the Chennai bowlers en route his unbeaten knock of 60 off 32 balls consisting of seven fours and three sixes.


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