Mumbai: Chris Gayle's powerful hitting helped Royal Challengers Bangalore crush Mumbai Indians by nine wickets in the 54th Indian Premier League match season five at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Gayle scored 82 off 59 balls and along with Virat Kohli (36 off 25) ensured that RCB won with 2 overs to spare. The emphatic win takes RCB to fourth position in the points table while Mumbai Indians occupy the third spot.
Chasing 142 runs to win, Gayle remained quite in the early part but exploded later on, hitting five fours and six sixes. Gayle was though lucky early in his innings as he was dropped by Dwayne Smith off the bowling of R P Singh when he was on 21.
Skipper Kohli, remained not out on 36 while Tillakaratne Dilshan, with whom Gayle shared 48 runs for the first wicket, scored 19. Gayle and Kohli ensured the visitors' victory with an unbeaten second wicket partnership of 94 runs in just 58 balls. Gayle's 59-ball blitz was his fourth 80-plus knock this IPL season. Gayle reached his fifty with a huge six of Pragyan Ojha in the 11th over. He struck Ojha for three successive sixes in that over.
Earlier, Bangalore bowlers dominated in the first innings as they restricted the Mumbai Indians to 141 for 6 in their quota of overs. Opting to bowl first, Bangalore struck two early blows to Mumbai as Vinay Kumar got rid of James Franklin and Rohit Sharma in the second over of the innings with scored board reading 2 for 2.
Dinesh Karthik then joined Sachin Tendulkar in the middle and the duo then tried to stabilise the batting as Tendulkar, who hit four fours in his knock shared 39 runs with Karthik. But Tendulkar's knock of 24 off 27 balls came to an end when he tried to pull Harshal from outside off stump and could only sky a return catch to the 21-year-old. Mumbai were tottering at 41 for 3 in the ninth over.
But Karthik and Ambati Rayudu consolidated with a stand of 44 in five-and-a-half overs, before Rayudu slapped Harshal to long-off to be dismissed for 22. Soon Karthik had to take long walk back to the pavilion as he was dismissed by Muttiah Muralitharan in the sixteenth over after making valiant 44 runs. Hero of the last match, Dwayne Smith was sent back in the next delivery as he gave a catch to Vinay Kumar and Mumbai were in deep trouble at 100 for 6.
But from there Kieron Pollard (21 not out) hammered two sixes in the final over of the innings. He shared an unbroken stand of 41 in 4.1 overs with Harbhajan Singh (20 not out) to help Mumbai Indians post a respectable total of 141 on the board.