After a solitary win, RCB returned to losing ways as they suffered their seventh loss this season. Mumbai Indians sparkled on their home ground and jumped to third place in the points table. Lasith Malinga, Man of the match, punctured RCB’s effort of posting a huge first innings total with four wickets. Later, Hardik Pandya scored a quick-fire 37 from 16 balls to clinch the win for MI. Here are three talking points from the closely contested match –
1. Lasith Malinga’s deadly final over
Rohit Sharma won the toss and inserted RCB to bat first. MI struck early and sent back both the openers without too many runs. AB de Villiers and Moeen Ali raised an incredible stand. The duo kept dealing in boundaries. They added 95 runs and carried RCB to 162/4 in 19 overs. Lasith Malinga playing in Alzarri Joseph’s place, stepped up to bowl the final over.
AB de Villiers dispatched the first ball for six over deep square leg. He edged the following ball and was run out by Pollard at the non-striker’s end. Malinga then snared two wickets in the next three balls with his slower deliveries. Umesh Yadav ran for two byes on the last ball. RCB added only nine runs in the last over and lost three wickets in the process.
2. Struggling Pandya
Mumbai began the 172-run chase extremely well. Quinton de Kock and Rohit Sharma launched an early attack and reached 67/0 by the time powerplay ended. RCB made a comeback with three quick wickets. MI sent Krunal Pandya at the number 5 spot when they needed 67 runs from 57 balls.
The Elder Pandya found it tough to get going. He struggled to find a boundary and also failed in rotating the strike. Krunal was ultimately dismissed by Mohammad Siraj. He returned with only 11 runs from 21 balls. His knock added pressure on the chasing side.
3. RCB turns to Negi for the crunch over
Nowadays, it’s a norm in T20s to hand the penultimate over to your best bowler. With two overs remaining, Bangalore had 22 runs in the bank. Virat Kohli had Umesh Yadav and Navdeep Saini as the options but the bowling coach had different ideas. Ashish Nehra, standing near the boundary, insisted Kohli hand the over to Negi. The captain obliged.
The left-arm spinner managed to spin the first ball across Hardik Pandya, and the big-hitter could not even touch it. Pandya made contact with the next four balls. They all went past the boundary ropes. 6,4,4,6. Pandya sealed the game in just four balls. He needed another ball to take MI past the finish line. RCB received flak for taking the spin risk.