|MI owner Nita Ambani with MoM Corey Anderson after the victory, on Sunday
Mumbai: New Zealander Corey Anderson’s astonishing 95-run knock under tremendous pressure and Aditya Tare’s six over deep square off the only ball he faced powered Mumbai Indians to the IPL VII play-offs leaving the Rajasthan Royals utterly disappointed.
Requiring to chase down a 190-run target within 15 overs, Mumbai Indians overhauled the target in 14.4 overs, with five wickets to spare, when Tare hoisted James Faulkner for a six.
In a thrilling finish, the scores were tied after 14.3 overs. Though Mumbai Indians needed just a run for victory, they needed a boundary to boost their net run rate and nose ahead of the Royals. Tare did exactly that as Faulkner bowled a full toss on the legs. Faulkner conceded 54 runs without taking a wicket.
It was a difficult task, but Anderson, who holds the world record of scoring the fastest hundred in one-dayers, showed his worth with one of the most destructive knocks in IPL.
His unbeaten 95 runs came off 44 balls with nine fours and half-a-dozen sixes.
With the win, Mumbai Indians edged out the Royals by virtue of having a better net run rate to earn the rights of playing the Eliminator match against the Chennai Super Kings, at Brabourne stadium, on Wednesday.
Anderson’s knock was much like Yusuf Pathan’s splendid innings for the Kolkata Knight Riders on Saturday.
The Mumbai Indians were 61 for three and looking down the barrel, but the left-handed Anderson and Ambati Rayudu shared a game-changing 81-run stand for the fifth wicket. Rayudu blasted 30 runs off just 10 balls.
Earlier, Sanju Samson and Karun Nair came up with responsible knocks to help the Royals post an imposing 189 for four after being put into bat.
Samson scored 74 off 47 balls while Nair took 27 balls for his 50-run innings as the two young batsmen shared a 100-run stand off just 57 balls.
Samson, who opened the innings instead of Ajinkya Rahane, hit three sixes and seven fours, while Nair’s knock was studded with two sixes and seven fours.
Big-hitting Australians Brad Hodge (29 not out) and Faulkner (23 off 12 balls) then joined hands in the last five overs to add 49 runs for the fourth wicket. The Royals were 59 for one at the half-way mark and went on to score 130 runs in the last 10 overs. (PTI)