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Match 9: Rajasthan Royals beat Mumbai Indians by 7 wickets

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text]Naman Trivedi Ahmedabad: The Rajasthan Royals made it three wins in three matches and climbed to the top of the Pepsi IPL 2015 standings after they defeated the Mumbai Indians by three wickets at the Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad. RR needed to rewrite history as no team had successfully chased a target of more than 150 at the venue. They set about their run-chase in a calculated manner; the openers Ajinkya Rahane and Sanju Samson (17) added 28 runs at run-a-ball before the latter was dismissed by R Vinay Kumar. Vinay Kumar_MI Rahane was then involved in a 64-run partnership with skipper Smith; the pair batted smartly, turning the strike over consistently, ensuring the scoreboard ticked over all the time and the required rate was kept in check. In 7.1 overs after the field restrictions were relaxed, the pair added 50 runs, finding the boundary only thrice. Rahane attempted to force the pace against leg-spinner Shreyas Gopal and got away on one occasion when Unmukt Chand put down a difficult catch. But his second attempt turned fatal as he picked out Anderson at long off; he made 46 from 39 balls and was involved in a 64-run partnership with his captain. Rahane_RR Teenager Deepak Hooda struck a couple of meaty blows before losing his leg stump to Lasith Malinga. Smith, who is going through a purple patch, made sure he didn’t fritter away his start, and chose the day to score his first half century in the IPL. He ran between the wickets like a mare – often converting ones to twos and twos to threes – apart from using some fancy footwork and playing some stunning shots to pick up boundaries. He remained unbeaten on 79 (made from 53 balls) as Faulkner picked up a single off the first ball of the final over to see RR home. For MI, who suffered their third successive defeat, R Vinay Kumar’s impressive first spell – of 3-0-13-1 – went in vain. J Suchith and Corey Anderson were the other economical bowlers, while Malinga and Shreyas Gopal, who came in for severe punishment, were the other wicket-takers. On a fabulous batting track at the Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad, the Mumbai Indians, who chose to bat first, posted a competitive 164 for 5 riding on an explosive partnership between Corey Anderson and Kieron Pollard. It was an innings of two halves; MI were very conservative in the first ten overs, scoring just 45, before adding a further 119 runs in the second half. MI were seen off to a sound start by their latest opening pair of Aaron Finch and Parthiv Patel. The right-left pair added 24 runs in 3.3 overs when the former was forced to retire with what appeared to be a hamstring injury; the Australian made 10 from 14 balls. Patel was the first MI batsman to be dismissed, holing out to Chris Morris off the bowling of Dhawal Kulkarni. Unmukt Chand made 12 from 17 balls batting at number three, while skipper Rohit Sharma – batting at four - was dismissed for his second Duck in two innings. That’s when the two overseas players – Anderson and Pollard – who were due for a big score, came together and put the innings back on track. Initially both batsmen matched each other stroke for stroke, but in the seventeenth over Pollard cut loose. He punished James Faulkner for two fours and a six, and brought up his half-century in the following over, needing only 28 balls to get to the milestone. In the eighteenth over he got stuck into Tim Southee, hitting him for two fours and two sixes, before picking Karun Nair at deep midwicket. Pollard made 70 and hit seven fours and five sixes in his 34-ball outing. The partnership between the two show-stoppers was worth 104 – MI’s third century partnership of the season – and lasted 9.1 overs. Anderson, who was given a lifeline when he was on 23 – caught off a No Ball bowled by Dhawal Kulkarni (the only infringement by a RR bowler in the innings) – brought up his own half-century in the final over when he picked up a four and a six off consecutive Chris Morris deliveries, before losing his stumps. He made 50 from 38 balls and hit five boundaries and three sixes. The Rajasthan Royals had several good performers, but it was a little strange to see RR captain Steve Smith – whose instincts possibly didn’t come off today – not get his best bowlers on the day to bowl out their four overs. Dhawal Kulkarni (1-15), Stuart Binny (1-8) and Deepak Hooda (1-0-3-0) all had economy rates of under six, but none of them bowled four overs. Tim Southee, Morris and Pravin Tambe were the other wicket-takers.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

About Sanjay Trivedi

Sanjay Trivedi is honorary editor of Asia Times. He is senior Indian Journalist having vast experience of 25 years. He worked in Janmabhoomi, Vyapar, Divya Bhaskar etc. newspapers and TV9 Channel as well as www.news4education.com. He is serving as Media Officer in Gujarat Technological University, the university which controlling 440 colleges of Engineering, Management, Pharmacy & Architecture colleges in Gujarat.

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