Ruthless Mumbai enter IPL final, losers Delhi have a lifeline (Lead)

Speedsters Jasprit Bumrah and Trent Boult on Thursday bowled four-time champions Mumbai Indians (MI) into their second successive Indian Premier League (IPL) final after crushing Delhi Capitals (DC) by 57 runs in Qualifier 1. DC, however, have a lifeline left.

Bumrah captured four for 14 and New Zealander Boult two for nine, after half-centuries by Ishan Kishan (55 not out off 30 balls) and Suryakumar Yadav (51 off 38), to ensure that reigning champions MI entered their sixth final in 13 attempts. Bumrah was adjudged the Man of the Match for his brilliant spell.

DC will now play the winners of the Eliminator in Qualifier 2 on Sunday. In the Eliminator, SunRisers Hyderabad will play Royal Challengers Bangalore on Friday. The winners of Qualifier will play MI in the final November 10.

As it had happened throughout the round-robin league, MI got solid contributions from their batters to first put a challenging total (200/5 wickets) before their bowlers came out all guns blazing to restrict DC at 143/8 wickets in 20 overs at the Dubai International Cricket stadium.

Lethal Bumrah was once again on song, emerging with impressive figures of 4-1-14-4. These are his best figures in all T20 matches and best by a MI bowler in an IPL playoff match. He is the only bowler to take two four-wicket hauls in IPL 2020. Thursday’s burst took his tally to 27 — most wickets by an Indian bowler in a single IPL.

Boult, on the other hand, scalped a couple of wickets conceding merely nine runs. Krunal Pandya (1/22) and Keiron Pollard (1/36) settled with one wicket apiece.

Chasing a challenging 201-run target, DC endured their worst start of the season after losing openers out-of-form Prithvi Shaw, Shikhar Dhawan, and Ajinkya Rahane, all departing without troubling the scorers. While Boult accounted for the DC opener’s wicket, Boult trapped Rahane.

MI inflicted more woes on their opponents, whose half of the men were back in the dressing room with just 41 runs on board. Axar Patel (42) and Marcus Stoinis (65) showed some resistance in the middle as they tried to rebuild after the early damages, and stitched 71 runs for the sixth wicket.

Bumrah castled Stoinis in the 16th over before the lanky pacer struck again in the same over to send back Daniel Sams (0), and that left DC tottering at 112/7. Kagiso Rabada remained unbeaten on 15 as DC fell short of the target by 57 runs.

Earlier, half-centuries by Yadav and Kishan, along with Hardik Pandya’s blitzkrieg (37 not out off 14 balls) powered Mumbai to a healthy 200/5 wkts in the allotted 20 overs.

Hardik and Ishan were also involved in a crucial unbeaten 60-run partnership off just 23 balls. The duo’s fireworks saw MI adding 55 runs off the last three overs.

Put into bat, MI started off cautiously before ace spinner Ravichandran Ashwin (3/29) trapped Rohit Sharma (0) early in the innings.

Quinton de Kock (40) kept one end safe, forging a 62-run partnership with Yadav before the former was sent back by Ashwin in the eighth over. Yadav, too, followed the MI opener, falling to Anrich Nortje (1/50) in the 12th over with MI’s scorecard reading 100/3.

Ashwin struck again in the next over, packing back a dangerous Keiron Pollard for a duck. Krunal Pandya (13) and Ishan then added 39 runs off 23 balls before Stoinis got rid of the former.

Ishan and Hardik then swiftly shifted gears, taking the DC bowlers to cleaners towards the ‘death’ overs as MI comfortably completed at 200/5.

Ishan’s unbeaten knock was laced with four boundaries and three sixes while Hardik smacked five maximums.

Brief scores: MI: 200/5 wkts in 20 overs (Ishan Kishan 55 not out, Suryakumar Yadav 51; Ravichandran Ashwin 3/29) beat DC: 143/8 wkts in 20 overs (Marcus Stoinis 65, Axar Patel 42; Jasprit Bumrah 4/14) by 57 runs

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