It was indeed a “rollercoaster” game as Virat Kohli put it during the post-game presentation. His team Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) defeated Mumbai Indians (MI) in a thrilling Super Over Monday in Dubai after the teams finished at level 201 in regular time. Kieron Pollard’s 60 of 24 and Ishan Kishan 99 of 58 helped MI get it to the wire after needing 80 of the last four overs in one stage with Hardik Pandya back in the pavilion. Pollard and Kishan played the watch game, watched the middle overs, and decided to pull out all the stops at death. “I think they played very well and patiently in the middle,” Kohli joked about MI’s approach.
With a draw and Navdeep Saini holding MI to seven points in the Super Over, RCB had a relatively easy target. The choices were easy too. AB de Villiers had hit 55 out of 24 earlier in the match and captain Kohli, although he didn’t have the best ball, could count on running between the wickets.
“I thought about who the best guys are to come back for two and it was me and AB. It was all about taking the field and taking responsibility, ”Kohli explained his decision to go out in the Super Over.
On the knock of de Villiers who won the Man of the Match award, Kohli said, “He came after a long hiatus. The way he hit and some of the shots he played was excellent.”
“Getting stuck in the bowlers and only he can do that best … He keeps it simple and doesn’t watch much cricket. Enjoy his life and come out, support his abilities. He’s relaxed and that’s exactly what we want from him, ‘Kohli added.
However, it was not a perfect game for RCB. There were catches – three of them – and some attempts in the field that could be called lazy. Yuzvendra Chahal was lazy to top Pollard in the 17th left and passed up an opportunity to fire the big-hitter after taking Adam Zampa for three sixes and a four in the over.
Substitute Pawan Negi took three good catches, but dropped one and Gurkeerat Mann saw a ball hit by Kishan burst through his hands and end up behind the ropes.
“Fielding is something we have to work on. If we had taken our chances it wouldn’t have been this close, ”Kohli said.
There were other positives too. Kohli caught Jasprit Bumrah well in the Super Over and Washington Sundar threw his four overs for just 12 and got Rohit Sharma fired.
“It was a good match against Jasprit. Top quality cricket and games like these people would love to watch. The changes we’ve made ensure that the Washi (Sundar) bowl in the Powerplay is paying off, ”said Kohli.
For Rohit it was a matter from too close but too far. “We were not in the game at all when we started with the bat. Great innings by Ishan there and then Pollard was brilliant for us as usual, ”said Rohit after the game.
Despite all the exploits to death by Pollard and Kishan, there was the start that Mumbai got – 35/2 from the first six overs – that acted as a spoiler afterwards.
“It’s just that we couldn’t start well, I thought we could chase 200 with the strength we have. We didn’t get the momentum in the first 6-7 overs and also lost three wickets, ”Rohit ruined the slow start.
“With Polly here, anything could happen, Ishan did well too, so we were confident we would get there,” he added.
By the time the Super Over came, MI needed a lot of luck defending seven six-ball runs as Hardik and Pollard failed to knock off. “Hardik is someone we trust to hit long shots, it won’t work out, but we are sure he can do things for us,” Rohit said of his choices in the Super Over.
A top edge of de Villiers’ bat that flew past the fine laying line for four, needing six out of four, sealed the match for RCB.
“I mean 7 runs, you have to have luck on your side, we had to get wickets, but there was also an unfortunate limit. We came back really well and took a lot of positives from this game, ”said Rohit.
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