The race for the final playoffs berth in the Indian Premier League 2021 is heating up as Mumbai Indians made a strong statement against Rajasthan Royals.
In what was one of their biggest wins of the competition, the Indians thrashed the Royals by 8 wickets with 70 balls to spare.
With this win, Mumbai Indians are now a step closer to the fourth-place finish but will need to win by a huge margin against Sunrisers Hyderabad to improve their net run rate.
Get the full story below.
Quick Stats from the game
- Rajasthan Royals: 90-9
- Mumbai Indians: 94-2
- Toss Winner: MI, elected to field first
- Top Batsman: Ishan Kishan
- Top Bowler: Nathan Coulter-Nile
- Man of the Match: Nathan Coulter-Nile
Sharjah Pitch Too Tricky for the Royals
Rajasthan Royals entered this match on the back of a superb batting performance against Chennai Super Kings, chasing down a target of 190 runs in Abu Dhabi.
However, when they came on to bat in Sharjah, we saw an entirely contrasting story.
The opening pair of Evin Lewis and Yashasvi Jaiswal added only 36 runs between them before heading back to the dugout. Both openers were out in the powerplay itself, leaving the Royals at 41-2 in 5.3 overs.
RR Top Batsmen
- Evin Lewis: 24 off 19; 3 4s, 1 6s
- Yashasvi Jaiswal: 12 off 9; 3 4s
MI Top Bowlers
- Nathan Coulter-Nile: 4-14, 4 overs
- James Neesham: 3-12, 4 overs
After that, it was just a matter of time before the rest of the players collapsed like a house of cards. James Neesham and Nathan Coulter-Nile ripped through Royals’ middle-order, getting Sanju Samson, Shivam Dube, and Glenn Phillips for less than 5 runs each. Jasprit Bumrah also got a couple of wickets to his name.
To put it differently, Mumbai Indians had reduced their Rajasthan counterparts to 50-5 in 9.4 overs – a pretty difficult position to bounce back from, especially when your top performers are out.
David Miller and Rahul Tewatia stitched 27 odd runs between them before the duo succumbed to the Neesham-Nile pair. It was clearly a day for Rajasthan’s batters to forget, seeing that they went 60 balls without a boundary – in a T20 game.
A Comfortable Chase for Mumbai
Needing just 91 runs to win, Mumbai Indians were under no real pressure right from the beginning.
Rohit Sharma and Ishan Kishan gave the side a solid start, respectively scoring 22 and 50 runs, with the latter welcoming the half-century with a six.
MI Top Batsmen
- Ishan Kishan: 50 off 25; 5 4s, 3 6s
- Rohit Sharma: 22 off 13; 1 4s, 2 6s
RR Top Bowlers
- Mustafizur Rahman: 1-32, 2.2 overs
- Chetan Sakariya: 1-36, 3 overs
Rajasthan Royals managed to bag a couple of wickets – Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav – but the damage was already done by then. Mumbai Indians sealed the win in 8.2 overs and thus improved their net run rate in the process.
With this win, Mumbai have moved up to fifth place in the table with 12 points from 13 games although, their net run rate is -0.048.
Sitting above them are Kolkata Knight Riders with a similar equation except their NRR is way better at 0.294. For Mumbai to finish fourth, they will need to beat Sunrisers Hyderabad and hope KKR lose to the Royals. Should KKR win (and they may very well in all likelihood), Mumbai will need to deliver a huge win to qualify on the basis of the net run rate.
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