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MI vs RPS IPL Final: Mumbai Indians continue IPL domination, win historic third title

The Indian Express Monday, May 22, 2017 438 reads

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Mumbai Indians have had the reputation of generally being slow starters in the IPL. However, in this edition, they have turned things around and have been in incredible form this season. Some smart tactical changes and quick fix ideas have contributed to Mumbai’s success as they finally went on to become the first team to win the IPL title three times. Hence, MI are the most successful side of the decade in terms of titles won.

While the batting has been the strong point of the Mumbai side, with power hitters like Kieron Pollard and Lendl Simmons and Parthiv Patel, the bowlers too haven’t been far behind. In fact, in the final, it was the bowlers who won them the match.

A lethal combination of Lasith Malinga, Mitchell Johnson and Jasprit Bumrah has worked wonders for MI. Added to that is the resurgence of Harbhajan Singh. The ‘turbanator’ has taken the responsibility of bowling in the powerplay and has also chipped in with crucial wickets. Conceding less than six runs per over, the veteran offspinner is showing why is he still one of the best in the game.  Completing him well is Karn Sharma who picked up his career-best 4/16 after a brilliant performance against KKR in the qualifiers.

Meanwhile, the batting too has looked equally good and has been led by Parthiv Patel.  The fact that Parthiv Patel has been Mumbai Indians most consistent batsmen in this IPL can be gauged from the fact that he is the only the batsman to feature in the list of top 10 run-getters in IPL 10. Parthiv loves to open the innings and has been consistent at the top of the order. The other batsmen too have chipped in equally.

The fielding too has been electric. Led by the Pandya brothers Mumbai hasn’t allowed the opposition to get away even when there have been few runs on the board have been few. The Pandya brothers have been the x-factor of the team and against KKR, in the IPL eliminator, Krunal Pandya proved his mettle. His knock of 45 from 30 saw him score runs all over the park at a strike rate of 150 on a pitch that was slow and where the ball was not coming onto the bat. However, what was also visible was his ability to keep composure and play safe and proper cricketing shots. Though he did take the bowlers to the stands but those were calculated risks.

Another aspect of Krunal is his athleticism on the field. In matches where he does not contribute with the ball, he makes sure he contributes by saving runs on the field. Together with Hardik, the duo forms an excellent partnership on the field which is rare to see.

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