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IPL 2020, Match 5: KKR vs MI – Rohit Sharma notches his 37th fifty to win it for the Men in Blue

Bouncing back from the defeat in the last game versus Chennai Super Kings (CSK), Mumbai Indians (MI) beat Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by a margin of 49-runs to win their first match in IPL 2020. Also, the victory marks MI’s first win in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) since 2014. 

Rohit Sharma’s 80 off 54 deliveries laid the foundation for the side’s triumph. His knock comprised 3-fours and 6-sixes, and he now holds 200 sixes in IPL, making him fourth on the list of leading six-hitters, just behind MS Dhoni (212), AB de Villiers (214), and Chris Gayle (326). 

Mumbai Indians now hold 20 wins over Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL history; the most wins by any team against a single opposition. Not to mention, with this game, Kieron Pollard who has been one of Mumbai Indians’ key players in titular seasons, became the first overseas cricketer to play 150 T20s in IPL. 

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Chasing 196, KKR had a slow and shaky start as they lost their openers Shubman Gill (7) and Sunil Narine (9) in the first five overs.

Skipper Dinesh Karthik promoted himself at No 3 and then kept the scorecard ticking with running in between the wickets and those occasions boundaries. Along with Nitish Rana, the duo added 46-runs to the third-wicket stand. 

With 125 needed from 60 balls, Karthik tried to up the scoring rate by stepping down and trying to hammer the leggie Rahul Chahar who had conceded 21-runs in his two overs, but, the move turned costly as he ended up getting himself dismissed on a decent 30 (20 balls, 5 fours, 6 sixes). 

It was only the next over by Kieron Pollard when Nitish Rana tried to loft a cover drive and was caught by Hardik Pandya and put curtains to his knock of 24 in 18 deliveries. Pollard’s overs wherein he grabbed figures of 3-0-21-1, proved effective for the four-time champions as it gave Rohit plenty of options for the death overs.

Now, with both Eoin Morgan and Andre Russell out in the middle, and 118 runs required in 48 deliveries, there was still a chance for KKR to be in the chase provided the duo resort to big-hitting.

Also Read – 4 Reasons why KKR can win IPL 2020

Rohit  Sharma played a masterstroke by introducing Bumrah back into the attack in the 16th over and got the duo dismissed, first Russell followed by Morgan in a span few deliveries.

The run-chase was officially cut as KKR needed 94 runs off 24 deliveries and the only positive in the end turned out to be Pat Cummins’ explosive knock-in Bumrah’s final over, smashing him for four sixes and a total of 27-runs coming in that over. That too didn’t last long as pacer James Pattinson got the better of Cummins in the 19th over and then Rahul Chahar striking down Shivam Mavi in the final over. In response to 196, KKR could post only 146 runs and lost nine wickets in the chase, losing the match by a margin of 49 runs.

Trent Boult (4-1-30-2) was the best performer with the ball, while James Pattinson, Jasprit Bumrah, and Rahul Chahar grabbed two wickets each.

Rohit Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav light up the stadium

Earlier in the day, Mumbai Indians lost the early wicket of Quinton de Kock to Shivam Mavi and were raring to forge a partnership against KKR that had names like Pat Cummins, Sunil Narine, Kuldeep Yadav, and Andre Russell in their armory.

Rohit Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav didn’t wait long as they started unleashing their mayhem and cruised at a rate of 10 runs per over.

Suryakumar’s runout on the final delivery of the 11th over didn’t affect the Men in Blue much as Saurabh Tiwary and later Hardik Pandya clobbered few big hits out of the stadium before being out on 21 and 13 respectively.

Also Read – 3 Reasons why RCB can win IPL 2020

In the final over, MI managed to garner 13 runs that comprised a four by Kieron Pollard on the third delivery, in return, getting the team to post 195 runs on board.

From KKR’s bowling unit, spinner Sunil Narine had an effective day at work as he scalped 1/22 in his quota of four overs, followed by Shivam Mavi who ended with figures 4-1-31-2. Sandeep Warrior, Pat Cummins, and Kuldeep Yadav remained wicketless

Mumbai Indians have won and lost a game each, and will now face Royal Challengers Bangalore on September 28 while Kolkata Knight Riders will be taking on the Sunrisers Hyderabad on September 26.

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V Shashank
A cricket aficionado who has been following the game since the historic Ashes 2013-14. "People throw stones at you, you turn them into milestones." - Sachin Tendulkar


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