Mumbai Indians win IPL final by one run

 By Kersi Meher-Homji

Oh what a heart-stopping final of IPL 2017 in Hyderabad! Mumbai Indians (MI) under skipper Rohit Sharma defeated Rising Pune Supergiants (RPS) led by Steven Smith by one run off the last ball.

This marked the 10th IPL which was inaugurated in 2008 and MI won the title for a record third time.

Batting first MI could score only 8 for 129, Krunal Pandya hitting 47 with three fours and two sixes and skipper Sharma making 24. It was the lowest first innings score in an IPL final and appeared an inadequate score for a Twenty 20 match. But funny things happen in T20 games.

For RPS Ajinkya Rahane (44 with five fours) and captain Smith (51 with two fours and two sixes) added 54 for the second wicket. It seemed a victory for the Pune team as Smith was there till the final over with only 11 runs needed in six balls.

But quickie Mitchell Johnson had Smith caught in over number 19.3 with seven runs needed for a win in three balls. They could manage only five and lost the thriller by one run.

Call it Aussie versus Aussie as Johnson’s dismissal of Smith led to MI winning the thriller by a solitary run off the last ball.

MI’s Krunal Pandya was adjudged Man of the Final. In my opinion MI’s Johnson who captured 3-26 deserved this honour as in his final over he took the vital wicket of Smith who was going great guns with his batting.

In IPL 2017, David Warner of Sunrisers Hyderabad scored most runs, 641 at 58.27 (highest score 126) in 14 matches. Bhivneshwar Kumar from the same franchise took most number of wickets, 26 at 14.19 (with 5-19 as his best spell) in 14 matches.

In the ten year history of IPL, Suresh Raina has scored most runs, 4540 at 34.13 (HS 100 not out) in 161 matches for Chennai Super Kings and Gujarat Lions. Virat Kohli comes next with 4418 runs at 37.44 (HS 113) in 149 matches for Royal Challengers Bangalore.

And in bowling Lasith Malinga is on top, 154 wickets at 19.01 (with 5-13 as his best spell) in 110 matches for Mumbai Indians.

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