Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Brilliant Bumrah helps Mumbai restrict GT to 168/6


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Ahmedabad, March 24: Jasprit Bumrah (3/14) was at his absolute best in his first IPL game in two years, firing in his express yorkers at will to help Mumbai Indians restrict Gujarat Titans to 168/6 here on Sunday.
Young left-hander B Sai Sudharsan top-scored with a 45 off 39 balls, while Rahul Tewatia made 22 off 15 balls down the order.
But the evening, without an iota of doubt, belonged to Bumrah, who missed the whole of last edition due to a lower back stress fracture.
He dismissed David Miller and Sudharsan in the 17th over in a space of three deliveries in what could be a potential game-changer.
Assuming that there could be dew later in the evening, MI’s new skipper Hardik Pandya invited GT to bat first, and Shubman Gill in his first game as captain was up to the task.
Looking to make an impact against his former team, Pandya opened the bowling and Wriddhiman Saha (19) slapped a wide ball through the off-side to begin GT’s campaign with a boundary.
Up against Gill, Pandya erred in line and the stylish batter used his wrists to whip him off his pads for a four, as the MI captain conceded 11 runs after his surprise move to start the proceedings at the expense of one of the world’s best bowlers, Jasprit Bumrah.
As Saha got a few useful boundaries, Gill found the fence with consummate ease as GT were off to a flyer.
However, Bumrah’s introduction in the fourth over brought MI instant success as the lead pacer sent back Saha with an express yorker, hitting the base of the middle stump. The former India stumper couldn’t bring his bat down in quick time.
Spin was brought on in Shams Mulani and Gill rocked back to cut the left-arm spinner through covers for a four. The GT captain then got down on one leg to slog-sweep Mulani for a huge six over deep square-leg.
Piyush Chawla bowled an economical first over, even as GT managed 47 runs for the loss of one wicket in the powerplay.
Chawla continued and Gill tried to disturb his rhythm, but failed. He danced down the ground to hoick him but did not get the necessary elevation, as Rohit Sharma, who is normally not seen fielding in such positions, judged it well to complete a neat catch in the deep.
The experienced Chawla snared the big fish with a googly as Gill (31 off 22 balls) walked back after getting his eye in, much to the relief of the hordes of Mumbai supporters at the Narendra Modi Stadium.
However, with Sai Sudharsan determined to start from where he left in the title clash against CSK last season with a magnificent 96, MI knew they had their task cut out.
South African pacer Gerald Coetzee accounted for Azmatullah Omarzai (17), while the brilliant Bumrah sent back David Miller and Sudharsan in one over before Rahul Tewatia lifted GT with his lusty hits. (PTI)


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