Sunday, April 25, 2010
Straight Mid off work for Dhoni
Super form of MI ends in the finals. The fielding was also a big differentiator: Mumbai dropped two sitters off the highest scorer in the match, Suresh Raina, while Chennai hung on to some superb catches like the ones to get rid of Tiwary and Duminy.
Questions will have to be asked about the Mumbai batting order, why was Pollard kept for so late, why push up Harbhajan when the youngsters Tiwary and Rayudu have been doing so well through the tournament.
Once again Sachin Tendulkar standing tall behind MI, had five stitches on his right hand three days ago, played a magnificent innings under pressure as he kept the Chennai bowling at bay and till the time he was in the middle, Mumbai knew they had an upper hand. He ends up IPL THREE with 618 runs in 15 matches at a average of 48.
But at the end Chennai Super Kings were crowned Indian Premier League III champions. Electing to bat, Chennai posted 168 for five, thanks to Suresh Raina's unbeaten 57 and then restricted Mumbai to 146 for nine to win their maiden IPL title in the grand finale at the packed DY Patil Stadium.
Chennai though had to spend some anxious moments towards the close of Mumbai run chase with big-hitting Kieron Pollard threatening to almost singlehandedly win the match before he was out in the penultimate over for a 10-ball 27 which was studded with three fours and two sixes.
For Chennai, who have been playing in their second final after finishing runners-up to Rajasthan Royals in 2008, it has been a roller coaster ride having made it to the semi-final in their last league match.
Raina was the man behind this success. He contribute in all fields, scored half century in the batting, pick handy wicket of bhajji and a brilliant catch of Tiwary.
The men in yellow went berserk in the middle as MS Dhoni's captaincy had overshadowed the bravado of Sachin Tendulkar in the big final.