MI suffer another heartbreak

Three games, three last-over thrillers, three heartbreaking losses!

It was a special day. Special in the every sense of the word. With over 21,000 children in attendance, and the Wankhede draped in blue, we didn’t need extra motivation. Alas, our boys fell agonisingly short.

Jason Roy scored a buccaneering 91 not out as Delhi Daredevils defeated Mumbai Indians by seven wickets in a close encounter at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday. Englishman Roy carried the bat besides hitting half-a-dozen sixes and as many fours as the Daredevils finally got their first points of the season, and we remain winless. Rishabh Pant smashed a 25-ball 47 while Iyer contributed an unbeaten 27 for the visitors.

When Mustafizur Rahman stepped up to bowl the final over of this high-scoring clash, the Daredevils needed 11. Roy hit a six and a four to bring it down to just one off four deliveries. Rahman pulled things back with three consecutive dot balls to ignite hopes of a Super Over but Roy lofted the last ball into the vacant deep cover region to seal the game. Rahman dropped Iyer twice in the 17th over and that cost us dear.

Earlier, Suryakumar Yadav and Evin Lewis wowed the senses with a 102-run partnership in just nine overs. The duo smashed 84 runs in the Powerplay — Mumbai’s highest-ever in the Vivo IPL — to leave the thousands of children in the stands thrilled and asking for more.

If Yadav’s 53 was replete with classical textbook shots, then Lewis was all muscle during the course of his 28-ball 44. Yadav, who opened the batting for the first time in his 101-match Twenty20 career, drove the third ball of the innings past mid-off. He punished Trent Boult later in the over by pulling one to square-leg for another four. Lewis brought up the fifty — MI’s fastest — with a humongous six in the fourth over.

Yadav, dealing in fours all this while, helped a Mohammed Shami delivery over fine-leg for a maximum. Lewis made the most of the final over of the Powerplay by tearing into Daniel Christian. He collected three fours before smashing the last ball over mid-off for six. Lewis wasn’t done. He hit another six — his fourth of the innings — to move to 48. Rahul Tewatia then provided Delhi with the breakthrough with a googly which Lewis lobbed to mid-off. Forty of Lewis’s 48 runs came off boundaries. It was some hitting.

Tewatia returned to remove Yadav but not before the Mumbaikar helped himself to 53 and, with it, earned the privilege to wear the Orange Cap. Ishan Kishan also hit an enterprising knock, his 44 propelling us past the 150-run mark. Christian pulled things back in the final overs by removing Kishan and Kieron Pollard — for a first-ball duck — off consecutive balls. Batting at No. 4, skipper Rohit Sharma made 18 and Krunal Pandya contributed 11 while Hardik Pandya scored just two. We did not score a boundary after 16.2 overs. Thanks to the openers, we scored 107 in the first 10 overs, 51 off the next five but only 36 off the last five to finish on 194/7.

Brief Scores: Mumbai Indians 194/7 in 20 overs (Suryakumar Yadav 53, Ewin Lewis 48, Ishan Kishan 44; Trent Boult 2/39, Mohammed Shami 1/36, Daniel Christian 2/36, Rahul Tewatia 2/36) lost to Delhi Daredevils 195/3 in 20 overs (Jason Roy 91*, Rishabh Pant 47, Shreyas Iyer 27*; Mustafizur Rahman 1/25, Krunal Pandya 2/21) by seven wickets.