IPL-10: Mumbai elect to field vs KKR in Qualifier II


The calming influence of skipper Rohit Sharma (26 off 24 balls) and his 54-run fourth wicket association with the consistent Krunal Pandya (45 not out, 30b, 8×4) finally sealed it for Mumbai last night.

Mumbai Indians Karn Sharma, celebrates the wicket Ishank Jaggi of Kolkata Knight Riders during the Indian Premier League cricket eliminator match in Bangalore, India, Friday, May 19, 2017.

Karn’s spell was founded on meticulous planning and excellent execution.

Earlier, Rohit placed his fielders intelligently in the batting powerplay to earn Mumbai vital wickets off hard-hitting Chris Lynn (4) and Sunil Narine (10). The next ball was sacked on leg stump as well, and Narine had another crack, but only managed a leg bye. Just one more hurdle. Karn, though, had shortened his length and angled the line further away from the left-hander.

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KKR caused a flutter among Mumbai ranks scalping three wickets inside the first six overs. He is a very good hitter straight.

But the run-rate dropped when both the top-order batsmen went sent to Doug out in quick intervals. “That is what I did”. The very next delivery Colin de Grandhomme was dismissed for a first-ball duck – rapped on the pad after not picking a googly. Karn bowls off just a couple of steps, but his quick-arm action makes it hard to pick the variation.

Jaggi was gone for a 31-ball 28, ending a 56-run sixth-wicket stand. Lasith Malinga, 10. Jasprit Bumrah, 11.

Rohit turned to Karn in the 15th, and the legspinner delivered again. The batsman skied a loft into the hands of long-on.

This match will surely be a great clash between the Captains as both Rohit Sharma and Gautam Gambhir are in good form. However, if rain derails proceedings and there is no match, then MI will move to the final as they have finished on top of the points table following the conclusion of league stage.

On the other hand, Kolkata knocked out the defending champions in the eliminator.

In fact, there had been no place for Karn in Mumbai’s first seven games of the season. Chawla’s four overs will be crucial. In all, he had taken nine wickets in seven matches before the second Qualifier.

“I think that [different players stepping up] has been the hallmark of this team”.

A disappointed KKR skipper Gambhir said after the match: “We discussed after the last game that we couldn’t get 160-170, we needed 140”. As Gambhir said after the match, the loss of wickets proved deadly for KKR. “[Three out of three losses] is in past”.

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