Mumbai Indians eliminate Delhi Capitals, RCB through to playoffs

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With their qualification for the play-offs on the line, Delhi Capitals needed a dazzling performance by their batters after being asked to take first strike by Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma. A fine spell by Jasprit Bumrah though put paid to their hopes.

That Capitals still managed to get to 159/7 was due to captain Rishabh Pant (39 runs off 33 balls) and Rovman Powell (43 off 34 balls). They added 75 runs for the fifth wicket to lift the team from 50/4 in 8.4 overs. Pant’s good outing with the bat was spoilt by a poor day on the field as DC were knocked out after losing their final game by six wickets at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday. Royals Challengers Bangalore were the beneficiaries, becoming the fourth team to make the playoffs.

Pant was left to rue his decision not to take the DRS against Tim David off the first ball he faced against Shardul Thakur. He was left kicking himself when the ultraedge showed a massive nick. It would have reduced MI to 95/4 after 14.4 overs. MI needed 66 off 32 balls at that point. David punished Pant for the lapse. He went on a six-hitting spree, hitting four during his 50-run partnership off 20 balls with Tilak Varma. When he got out at the total of 145, MI were left to get 15 off 13 balls.

Pant’s refusal to review cost Delhi 34 runs off the next 10 balls that David faced before getting out for 34 (11 balls).

Though an inconsequential game as his team was already eliminated, MI pace ace Bumrah, who has come alive in the last few games, was at his best. He prized out three of Capitals’ key players in Prithvi Shaw, Mitchell Marsh and Powell to ensure their innings never really took off.

In their all-important game, Capitals couldn’t have got off to a worst start. Pant lost the toss and two in-form batters, David Warner and Marsh, were back in the hut after 3.2 overs when Mumbai Indians took two wickets in three balls, reducing them to 22/2.

The equation was simple: Capitals had to win to knock-out RCB, who had finished the league stage with 16 points after 14 games (8 wins, 6 losses). Capitals had the advantage of net run rate against RCB’s -0.253, but it all ended in vain.

The Capitals camp had a nervous entry to the stadium. Immediately after toss it started drizzling. But to the relief of the Capitals fans it didn’t last more than 10 minutes and the game began on time. The finish though left them dejected.


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