Calcutta: A dramatic final over from Ranganath Vinay Kumar saw Royal Challengers Bangalore earn a thrilling two-run victory over the Mumbai Indians, at the Chinnaswamy Stadium, on Thursday. This was the Royal Challengers Bangalore's first win at home against the Mumbai Indians.
Mumbai Indians needed 10 runs for victory for the final over with only three wickets down, but a double-strike from Kumar, early in the over, brought two new batsmen to the crease, and mounted substantial pressure on the visitors.
Kieron Pollard got on strike for the first time, with eight runs needed and only two balls remaining and though he struck his first ball for a four, which would have been a six, but for one inch, he could only dig out the perfect yorker Kumar delivered off the last ball as far as long on.
“Cricket is the biggest winner,” said Kapil Dev.
The hosts' victory had been set up earlier in the match by a Chris Gayle IPL classic. His unbeaten 92 from 58 balls helped his side overcome a pedestrian start, and launched them to 156 for five.
Royal Challengers Bangalore captain Virat Kohli said it was an emotional victory for them.
The following are excerpts
Virat Kohli: It was an emotional win for me. We lost a couple of early wickets. But then Chris (Gayle) batted beautifully. Some of us also contributed. We knew that 156 was good enough. The dew came on later in the innings and then the game turned out to be a see-saw. ..
I told the boys during the pep talk ahead of the game that I always give my 100 per cent commitment on the field and I expect the same from them. I am happy that they didn’t let me down. I am proud of my boys. The guys are ready and confident. The way (Jaydev) Unadkat bowled that over and then Vinay (Kumar) ended things for us was very commendable.
Hats off to Chris for continuing with his style of batting. He has been doing it for us for the past two years Hope he continues in the same way in the tournament.
Ricky Ponting: I may lose most of my finger nails... Disappointing not to have won the game. We have to analyse our game. I think with our bowing today we were a bit behind. But the match was really tight. With three overs remaining we were the favourites again but then unfortunately things didn’t go our way after that. In the penultimate ball only if Pollard hit it 2 inches away the result could have been different.
We have to get better within the next couple of days. It has been a while since I have captained a T20 side so I was trying to get used to the pace.
We had a good chat about Jasprit (Bumrah). He is an unusual bowler. When he gets it right he takes wickets. And today he didn’t let us down.
Chris Gayle (MoM): As I was injured I resorted to less running and more hitting. Hopefully the injury’s not serious, and hopefully, I will be ready for the next game. I might come out swinging early in another game. I might change a bit based on the situation and the game. The ball was seaming a bit. We lost wickets. We lost Virat. I needed to stay there. The key was to put up a partnership with Christian. But then even he fell. But I thought a total of 140-150 was good on this wicket. Then our bowlers did a really good job. They made us proud.
Well, if I was bowling off-spinners I’d probably take 4 for 10 runs because I’m the best off-spinner around!
Vinay Kumar: I was always looking to bowl a yorker to Pollard. Many things going through my mind. We had a plan for Pollard. But we had planned not to bowl a full length delivery. I am playing in the sixth edition of the IPL. Three years back I would have bowled to his strength, but I am more mature now. The penultimate ball was traumatic. If it would have been a six, I don’t know what would have happened. But I am happy with my effort and it feels wonderful.