T20 Big Bash League - KFC

Bangalore hold nerve in thriller

5/4/2013 08:45 AM
Chris Gayle

Royal Challengers Bangalore 5-156 (Gayle 92*, Bumrah 3-32) defeated Mumbai Indians 5 -154 (D Karthik 60, V Kumar 3-27) by two runs.

A typical mammoth Chris Gayle knock has helped Bangalore record their first win of IPL 2013, edging past a valiant Mumbai Indians by two runs.

The match came down to the final delivery when Kieron Pollard faced a pumped Vinay Kumar needing four to win and three to tie. The penultimate ball fell inches short of a maximum, forcing Pollard to find the boundary for the win. A brilliant yorker produced only a single, handing Kumar and Bangalore a thrilling victory.

Mumbai captain Ricky Ponting won the toss and fielded in his debut match as Indians skipper. Mitchell Johnson started in fine form, swinging the ball away at pace, eventually castling Dilshan with a pearler. 

The economical start was interrupted by Virat Kohli who belted three consecutive boundaries off Jasprit Bumrah. The awkward seamer would have his revenge, trapping the India star for 24.

From there it was the Chris Gayle show. Eleven fours and five sixes scattered players and fans, with a huge six from the final ball of the innings the icing on the cake. Last year's leading run-scorer already sits at the top of the mountain.

One feature of franchise T20 cricket is the opportunity for greats of past and present to team up. This match had one of those moments. Ricky Ponting and Sachin Tendulkar, arguably the best two batsmen of the last 20 years, opened for Mumbai. Their partnership of 52 put the visitors in control before a mix up ended Sachin's stay at the crease, run out for 23. 

Mumbai's momentum then deserted them, struggling to stay in touch with the required run rate. All it takes is one big over in T20 cricket and that's what Dinesh Karthik provided, launching Dan Christian for three massive sixes and a no-ball four to swing the match back to even.

Karthik's demise at the hands of Kumar in the final over almost ended the run chase then and there. Pollard's shot was just short in the end, leaving Bangalore to erupt in the joy of victory.