Former Chennai Super Kings pacer and current bowling coach Dwayne Bravo cheekily revealed after making the final that they were “scared” to face Mumbai Indians in the final.
Bravo’s wish was fulfilled in Ahmedabad on Friday as defending champions Gujarat Titans set up a clash with CSK in Sunday’s IPL final.
Mumbai Indians needed to chase down 234, the highest in IPL’s history, but ended 62 runs short. Mohit Sharma completed a five-wicket haul as Mumbai were bundled out for 171.
If the Gujarat Titans’ innings was all about Shubman Gill’s century, Mumbai Indians’ Suryakumar Yadav tried to put up a fight with 61 off 38 balls before falling to Mohit.
Gujarat Titans' Mohammed Shami along with teammates celebrates the wicket of Mumbai Indians batter Rohit Sharma during the IPL 2023 cricket playoff match between Gujarat Titans and Mumbai Indians at Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Friday. PTI picture
Mohammed Shami sent the Titans openers back but Tilak Varma and Surya kept them in the chase. Rashid Khan bowled Varma with the last ball of the Powerplay overs. Surya and Cameron Green then forged 50 off 29 balls as Mumbai Indians reached 110 for three off 10 overs. But Josh Little bowled Green with one that seamed into the right-hander.
Mumbai Indians needed 85 off the last six overs but Surya’s dismissal in the 15th over ended their hopes.
Friday was all about one man — Gill. The opener hit his third century of this IPL. Titans captain Hardik Pandya’s animated pep talk in the team huddle in Ahmedabad before the knockout match could have encouraged Gill to produce another superlative knock.
Gill’s 129 off 60 balls with 10 sixes and seven boundaries helped the Titans reach 233 for three. The opener is the leading run-getter in IPL 2023 with 851 runs. Only Kohli (973 in 2016) and Buttler (863 in 2022) have had more productive seasons.
There have been other batters who have excelled with aggression and flamboyance but Gill was of a different class. The roll of the wrists, the perfect backlift, his nimble footwork and a still head stood out. Having survived a sharp chance at 30, Gill never looked back.