Skipper Sachin Tendulkar and young Ambati Rayudu clobbered the Royal Challengers Bangalore bowling as title contenders Mumbai Indians cruised to a nine wicket victory in an Indian Premier League match at the Chinnaswamy Stadium on Tuesday.
Chasing a target of 141, Mumbai Indians reached the target with nine balls to spare. Mumbai Indians now have two
wins from as many matches.
On a strip where RCB batsmen struggled to get going, Tendulkar (55 not out, 46 balls, 7x4), Ambati Rayudu (63 not
out, 50 balls, 9x4) sent the RCB bowlers on a leatherhunt with an undefeated 110-run second wicket partnership from 86 balls.
They were also helped by some lacklustre fielding by the home team.
It was Davy Jacobs (22, 16 balls, 2x4, 2x6) who started the charge by hitting Zaheer Khan for a couple of fours and
two big sixes over long-on and deep mid-wicket.
Jacobs was cleaned up by Dirk Nannes when he backed too far down the leg-side trying to hit over extra cover. Tendulkar who was watching quietly from the other end then took it upon himself.
A signature straight drive off Abhimanyu Mithun started it all. When the spinners came on, he was quick to rock on to the backfoot and hit them over deep mid-wicket. Rayudu, who was watchful for the first few balls started with a flat-batted boundary over deep mid-wicket off Mithun and then followed it up by charging down the track and hitting the bowler through the covers. The youngster beat Tendulkar to his his half-century in style when he lofted Asad Pathan for a boundary over extra cover.
Considered as an India prospect till he joined the rebel Indian Cricket League, the Hyderabadi who now plays for Baroda
a glimpse of his talent when he clipped Zaheer over mid-wicket for a boundary and followed it with a lofted bowlers' back
drive. He matched the legendary Tendulkar stroke-for stroke as never did MI look in any sort of trouble.
Earlier, Tillakaratne Dilshan and AB de Villiers added 91 runs runs for the second wicket as Royal Challengers Banaglore managed to set a modest target of 141 for the Mumbai Indians after being put into bat at the Chinnaswamy Stadium.
Dilshan (59 not out, 52 balls, 4x4, 2x6) carried his bat through while De Villiers (38, 36 balls, 3x4, 1x6) scored some useful runs on a wicket where the ball wasn't coming onto the bat. Lasith Malinga and Kieron Pollard got a couple of wickets each.
Malinga started from where he left against Delhi Daredevils. The very first delivery of the match was a toe-crusher about which former India colts player Mayank Agarwal (0) didn't have any clue. There was some late swing before it the base of the off-stump.
Virat Kohli (12, 19 balls, 2x4) who got a couple of boundaries wasn't in his element as he failed to get going with both Malinga and Munaf Patel bowling tight opening spells.
Along with Dilshan, Kohli added 19 runs before Kieron Pollard coming in as one change dismissed him. As he was getting increasingly frustrated, Kohli decided to pull Pollard but his mistime pull-shot was taken by wicketkeeper Davy Jacobs who had to run back to catch the skier.
Dilshan and De Villiers couldn't up the ante till the 13th over. Save occasional boundaries, both were content playing the singles and twos.
It was in the 14th over bowled by Pollard that saw Royal Challengers Bangalore get 11 runs with Dilshan and De Villiers helping themselves for a boundary each. This over was followed by another from Harbhajan Singh that yielded nine runs.
The first six of the match came as late as the 16th one when De Villiers lifted left-arm spinner Ali Murtaza for a six over deep mid-wicket.
Finally Pollard had the last laugh when De Villiers's aerial shot was taken by the bowler himself. It was difficult to understand why little known Asad Pathan (0) was sent ahead of Saurabh Tiwary (16 not out, 10 balls, 3x4). It was Tiwary whose lusty blows helped RCB score 28 runs in the last 2.3 overs.