This was arguably the best match of the tournament so far. Last over finishes are always fun to watch, not for the respective fans though, but at the end of the day cricket is the real winner. Forgive me for the cliched phrase. Anyways, we have more in store. Mumbai host Delhi at the Wankhede Stadium and we expect another closely fought battle there. You can switch tabs to follow all the updates of the match.
MS Dhoni is the unanimous choice for the Man of the Match award. Big roar from the crowd as he takes the trophy. Dhoni says that it was a difficult one but to have strikers till the end helped. Admits that playing out Rashid Khan was part of their plan. Further says that Manoj Tiwary contributed and his contribution was vital. Adds that in modern cricket there is no run rate which is high and it depends on the opposition bowlers. Feels whoever handles their nerve generally comes on top.
A smiling Steven Smith says that it was very close in the end but Dhoni did what he has done many times in the past. Admits that Hyderabad got a few too many as his bowlers failed to execute their plans. Praises Rahul Tripathi for his knock and has a word of praise for Dhoni again. Admits next five games are very big for them and hopes to do well and climb on the ladder.
David Warner credits MS Dhoni and says he is known as a finisher for a reason. Adds that there were misjudgements from his bowlers. Praises Moises Henriques for his tremendous batting. Feels 170-175 was a par total here and ends by again praising Dhoni for his knock.
The visitors did well to pull things back after the initial onslaught by Rahul Tripathi. The opener once again provided a flying start but things slowed down as he departed. Hyderabad had scored 63 runs in the last 5 overs of the first innings but conceded 64 while defending to emerge second best on the night. The spinners bowled tightly but the pacers went for runs. To be honest, the 19th over is what finished the game for them. Bhuvneshwar Kumar is a huge impact player when it comes to defending totals. But his last over went for 19 runs and that was it. It was too much to ask of the young Siddarth Kaul to defend 11 off the last over when Dhoni was on strike. At the end, Kaul did take it to the last ball only to come second. No guesses who the Man of the Match will be. Let's find out what he has to say...
What a thriller we have just witnessed! MS Dhoni repeated his old heroics to finish a match that was not in their hands at any moment. He came in the middle after Pune lost their captain Steven Smith and with his team needing 90 off 55 balls. He was a bit tentative in the start of the innings but was always positive. Wickets kept tumbling at the other end but he kept his calm and stitched a 58-run stand with Manoj Tiwary to take the hosts home. A last ball four really was the icing on the cake for this champion player who was facing a lot of criticism lately.
Siddarth Kaul to MS Dhoni
FOUR! Dhoni finishes it off in style! Phew what a match! Dhoni the finisher has returned and in what manner! Kaul bowls a full ball, outside off, Dhoni calmly drives it through covers for a boundary. The Pune dugout is ecstatic and why not, these last over wins lift the team altogether. PUNE WIN BY SIX WICKETS.
2 needed off 1! MS Dhoni on strike. Plenty of talks going on. Bhuvneshwar Kumar is having a chat with the bowler. Can we have a Super Over?
Fuller length on the sticks, Dhoni clips it hard through mid-wicket. Warner runs across, collects the ball and hurls a throw at the non-striker's end. The ball goes over the bowler but Bhuvneshwar Kumar does good back up and keeps it to only two.
Siddarth Kaul to Manoj Tiwary
Once again a full toss around off, Tiwary flicks it through square leg for another single.
A low full toss around leg, Dhoni digs it out through fine leg for a single. 5 off 3 needed.
Siddarth Kaul changes his angle. He is running from around the wicket to Dhoni.
On a length and around off, Tiwary pushes it towards covers for a single.
DROPPED AND FOUR! This is a very costly drop at a very wrong time. Length ball around off, Tiwary heaves it. The ball goes high up in the air and goes towards Rashid Khan at deep mid-wicket. He positions himself well to take the catch but it goes between his hands and then into the fence. Rashid buries his head down. The umpire goes upstairs to check whether it was a six or a four and the replays show that it was the latter.
Siddarth Kaul to bowl the final over. 11 more needed for a win. Manoj Tiwary on strike. Going to be a tight finish.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar to MS Dhoni
A low full toss on the sticks, Dhoni strikes it past the bowler for a couple of runs. 19 from the over!
Bhuvneshwar Kumar to Manoj Tiwary
Tiwary flicks this through mid-wicket and calls Dhoni across for a run.
Dhoni tries to pull this short ball but inside edges it on his pads. The ball goes towards backward point and they take a run.
SIX! Take that! This also brings up his 17th Indian T20 League fifty! Full and on the stumps, Dhoni gets under the white object and tonks it over long on for a maximum. The equation has come down to 15 runs off 9 balls.
FOUR! Probably the first time a batsman has put Bhuvneshwar Kumar under pressure in this tournament. Length ball, outside off, Dhoni slices it over point for a boundary. A lot of talks were going on about his finishing abilities but he is putting them to rest with an outstanding knock.