Rohit Sharma led his team to victory and clinched the title for the second time in three years. It was remarkable turnaround for the Mumbai Indians this season. They started their campaign by losing their first four matches and they were written off by people. But, they rose from the ashes like a phoenix and managed to pull off a comprehensive victory against the Sunrisers Hyderabad in their last league game, which was a must win game to qualify for the playoffs for both the teams. The win took MI directly to the second spot from sixth spot in the league standings and gave them the chance to take on the table toppers Chennai Super Kings in the first qualifier. Royal Challengers’ last league match was washed out and that helped MI to seal the second spot in the standings.
In the first qualifier at home, MI outplayed CSK in every department of the game and got a direct ticket to the finals at Kolkata. CSK defeated RCB in the second qualifier at Ranchi and set up the summit clash with MI.
A new sporting track was used for the finals on 24th at the Eden Gardens. It was a batting beauty with a little amount of grass on it. MS Dhoni won the toss and chose to bowl first. This decision surprised everyone and Rohit was happy to lose the toss.
Put in to bat first, Parthiv Patel was run out in the very first over by Faf du Plessis. It was an absolute stunner and CSK failed to capitalize on MI’s early loss. It was a one-way traffic from there on as Rohit and Simmons tore into CSK’s bowling. Rohit and Simmons put up a 119 run partnership for the second wicket and MI were 98 for the loss of one wicket at the half way mark with a run rate of 9.8 per over. Simmons continued his excellent run in the tournament to become the third player to cross 500 runs this season. Pollard and Rayudu too chipped in and smashed a few deliveries. MI carried the momentum and scored till the end with a run rate of 9 to 10 and ended up putting a big total of 202/5 in 20 overs.
The track at Eden has always been good for chasing, but things didn’t go in CSK’s favour from the second over of the match. Chasing a score of 202, CSK’s openers ended up scored just 31 for the loss of one wicket in the first six overs. Dwayne Smith struggled against the MI seamers, but managed to score 57 runs. Suresh Raina was stumped off a delivery from Harbhajan for 28. CSK were struggling at 99/3 in 13.3 overs when the Captain came in to bat. He fell early to a yorker from Malinga and Dhoni’s wicket confirmed what had seemed inevitable. With an out of form top order, it was a very risky decision to chase in a big final. And the decision proved costly for Dhoni & Co.
MI’s bowlers didn’t give away runs at any point of time and CSK batsmen fell short of 41 runs at the end of 20 overs. Mumbai Indians were crowned Champions for the second time. Captain Rohit Sharma was adjudged the Man of the match.
Here’s list of award winners at this year’s IPL:
Champions – Mumbai Indians (Rs 15 crores)
Runner-up – Chennai Super Kings (Rs 10 crores)
Orange Cap (most runs in the tournament) – David Warner (SRH) scored 562 runs in 14 innings.
Purple Cap (most wickets in the tournament) – Dwayne Bravo (CSK) took 26 wickets in 16 innings.
Emerging player of the season – Shreyas Iyer (DD) scored 439 runs in 14 innings.
Fair play award for the season – Chennai Super Kings
Best catch of the tournament – Dwayne Bravo (CSK vs RR). Bravo took a spectacular one-handed catch at the boundary line to dismiss Shane Watson.
Most valuable player of the season – Andre Russell (KKR)
Other important statistics which sums up this season:
Total centuries – 4 (AB de Villiers, Chris Gayle, Brendon McCullum and Shane Watson)
Highest individual score – AB de Villiers (RCB vs MI) 133 not out.
Fastest century – Chris Gayle – 46-ball 100 vs KXIP
Fastest half century – Andre Russell (KKR vs KXIP) and Harbhajan Singh (MI vs KXIP) scored 50 off 19 balls. Russell won the award as he had a better strike rate.
Most sixes (Maximum sixes award) – Chris Gayle (RCB) – 38 sixes.
Most fours – David Warner (SRH) – 65 fours.
Total sixes in the tournament – 692
Total wickets in the tournament – 686
Highest team score – 235/1 – RCB vs MI
Best bowling figures – 4/10 – Ashish Nehra (CSK vs RCB)
Fastest ball bowled – 151.11 kmph – Mitchell Johnson (KXIP)
Most dot balls bowled in an innings – 18 – Zaheer Khan (DD Vs CSK 4-1-9-2)
Most dot balls in the tournament – 170 – Nehra (CSK – 22 wickets in 16 innings. 62 overs – 449 runs)
Most maiden overs bowled in the tournament – 4 – Sandeep Sharma (KXIP)