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Rohit, bowlers lead Mumbai Indians to fifth IPL title

11 Nov 2020 10:37, Somoy English Desk
Rohit, bowlers lead Mumbai Indians to fifth IPL title
Rohit, bowlers lead Mumbai Indians to fifth IPL title

Mumbai Indians schooled first-time finalists Delhi Capitals to clinch their fifth IPL title, adding more credence to their growing reputation of being the best T20 side in the world.

The seeds of MI's commanding five-wicket win in Dubai were sown by the bowlers who finished as well as they began to tie down DC to an underwhelming total of 156/7. 

Rohit Sharma then led the way with the bat, and helped Mumbai to not just buck the trend of winning titles only in odd years (2013, 2015, 2017 and 2019), but also matched CSK for the only other big achievement left to be ticked off - a successful title defence.

Mumbai, the most successful team in IPL history, chased 157 with eight balls to spare as captain Rohit Sharma hit 68.

Trent Boult took 3-30 for Mumbai, including Marcus Stoinis with the first ball of the match in Dubai.

Delhi were 22-3 before captain Shreyas Iyer made 65 not out - he added 96 with Rishabh Pant - but Mumbai ensured their total was never enough.

The defending champions were always in control of their chase after Rohit and Quinton de Kock plundered 45 from the first four overs.

Rohit was caught at deep mid-wicket with 20 needed from 23 balls and, although Kieron Pollard and Hardik Pandya soon followed, Ishan Kishan's unbeaten 33 off 19 balls took Mumbai to victory.

It follows their IPL wins in 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2019 and means they have won the world's premier domestic Twenty20 competition at least twice more than any other team.

This year's tournament was held in the United Arab Emirates without fans and delayed from the spring because of the coronavirus pandemic.

England pace bowler Jofra Archer was named as the most valuable player. He took 20 wickets and scored 113 runs, including 10 sixes, for Rajasthan Royals.

New Zealand seamer Boult, who starred throughout with 25 wickets, bowled a brilliant new-ball spell to put the game in their favour.

Delhi rallied through Iyer and Pant, who made 56 off 38 balls, but Mumbai finished the innings impressively, conceding only 20 runs off the last three overs.

Rohit batted majestically, hitting five fours and four sixes in his trademark, classical style. His first six, over long-on off spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, came from the third ball of the chase, reports cricbuzz and BBC.

Rohit fell with the end in sight but so comfortable was the win that Mumbai's bench were able to shake hands in celebration before the winning runs were hit.

Delhi were appearing in their first IPL final and had lost all three previous meetings with Mumbai this season. They were underdogs before the showpiece began and suffered as their key players failed.

Australia all-rounder Stoinis edged Boult behind to fall for a first-ball duck and fellow opener Shikhar Dhawan, Delhi's highest run-scorer in the tournament, made only 15. He was bowled playing an ill-advised sweep to off-spinner Jayant Yadav in the fourth over.

Defending a low total, South Africa pace bowler Kagiso Rabada - the tournament's leading wicket-taker - could not prevent the Mumbai openers' onslaught and conceded 18 from his first over.

He returned again when Mumbai lost their second wicket - Suryakumar Yadav was run out for 19 after a mix-up with Rohit - and was hit for 11 as Rohit ensured Delhi were unable to come back into the game.

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