Rahane, bowlers take Rajasthan to easy win over Mumbai
It was a clinical performance by the Rajasthan batsmen and bowlers as Mumbai badly capitulated in their innings to hand the home side an easy victory.
Rajasthan Royals demolished Mumbai Indians by 87 runs in a one-sided match of the Indian Premier League 2013 being played at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur.
The home side's bowlers - Ajit Chandila (2/6), Ankeet Chavan (0/10), James Faulkner (3/16), Siddharth Trivedi (1/17), Stuart Binny (2/14) and Kevon Cooper (1/25) - were absolutely clinical on a 'drier than usual' pitch, as predicted by Rajasthan's skipper Rahul Dravid at the toss.
Earlier, a solid innings of 68* by Ajinkya Rahane and quick-fire knocks by Shane Watson (31 off 25), Dishant Yagnik (34 off 24) and Brad Hodge (27* off 15 balls) took Rajasthan Royals to a formidable total against Mumbai Indians in the 23rd match of the Indian Premier League being played in Jaipur. (BCCI Image)
The first two overs bowled by Mumbai's Mitchell Johnson were on target, quick and had Ajinkya Rahane and Shane Watson in a bit of bother. The Indian batsman was lucky to have survived an inside-edge while the Australian was hit on the body by a vicious bouncer. (BCCI Image)
Watson (jumping in trouble vs Johnson) then hit young Rishi Dhawan for a beautiful six over mid-wicket. That survival period helped the Rajasthan duo to a great extent as Pragyan Ojha's over quite literally opened up the flood-gates. The left-armer's first over went for 13 as Rahane hit him for a straight six. (BCCI Image)
Lasith Malinga was then taken to the cleaners as Watson hit 16 runs off his second, including a leg-bye. Malinga's first over had cost Mumbai 8 runs, with Rahane hitting a couple of crisp boundaries. (BCCI Image)
Ojha then put the brakes on the scoring in his second over, giving away only three runs and that probably cost Rajasthan a wicket. Kieron Pollard was introduced and got Watson off his second delivery as the Australian tried to bludgeon one through covers, handing the simplest of catches to keeper Karthik. Pollard bowled that delivery from way behind the umpire. (BCCI Image)
Rajasthan then surprised by sending Dishant Yagnik ahead of Dravid/Hodge/Binny, to probably keep the momentum going. And the way IPL has shaped so far, their move clicked. Yagnik raced away even as Rahane stayed in 'steady mode'. He played with a strike-rate of almost 150. (BCCI Image)
Mumbai meanwhile floundered as Rishi Dhawan's 'mad' over provided the initiative fairly and squarely to Rajasthan. He bowled nine balls in the 12th over - including two no-balls (free-hits) and a wide. Despite all that, he went for just 13, as Rahane and Yagnik failed to capitalise on the free-hits. (BCCI Image)
Again Rajasthan's momentum was halted as Malinga gave away just 5 runs in the next over. This made Yagnik try to hit a Harbhajan delivery (next over) for a 'reverse flick'. Sachin Tendulkar completed a good catch at short fine leg to dismiss Yagnik for 34 runs off 24 balls. (BCCI Image)
Solid innings of 68* by Ajinkya Rahane and quick-fire knocks by Shane Watson (31 off 25), Dishant Yagnik (34 off 24) and Brad Hodge (27 off 15 balls) took Rajasthan Royals to a formidable total on 179/3 against Mumbai Indians. (BCCI Image)
Mumbai then got off to the worst possible start, as Dravid's toss prediction of a 'drier than usual' pitch came to be true. The Rajasthan skipper started off with spin from both ends - Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan.
The right-armer Chandila removed Sachin Tendulkar in the very first over for 1. The Master Blaster tried to hit a sweep across the line but managed just a top-edge. Siddharth Trivedi took a simple catch at short fine leg. (BCCI Image)
It was then the turn of Ricky Ponting, who had just 48 runs in 4 matches this season, to depart for 4. His tally of runs this IPL read 5 matches, 52 runs at a strike-rate of 69.33 in IPL 2013 after the dismissal. Chandila was the wicket-taker again as Ponting gave a simple caught and bowled, closing the face of his bat too early. (BCCI Image)
Mumbai would then have banked on their best batsmen this season so far - Dinesh Karthik and Rohit Sharma - to deliver the goods. Karthik looked in form right from the outset and hit early couple of boundaries off Chavan and James Faulkner.
Rohit Sharma though, unfortunately for Mumbai, decided to fail for once. Siddharth Trivedi, coming in to bowl his first over, removed Sharma off the very first ball, trying to hit a short-arm jab of a shortish delivery. Watson took a comfortable catch at mid-wicket. Sharma scored 2 off 7 balls. (BCCI Image)
The 'procession' did not stop there for Mumbai, as another bowler took a wicket in his very first over. This time Stuart Binny accounted for Kieron Pollard, clean bowling him for 1 off 7 balls. (BCCI Image)
Karthik hung on, tried hard, even as wickets fell in a heap but could not manage to break free. He was dismissed for a painful 30 off 32 balls trying to hoist a James Faulkner slower one out of the park, only giving simple catch to Hodge at long-on. (BCCI Image)
Young Rishi Dhawan went as soon as he came in, giving a simple catch to Faulkner at mid-wicket and Stuart Binny his second scalp. He did not trouble the scorers. A disastrous mix-up between in coming Harbhajan Singh and Ambati Rayudu then ended the former's inning in the same over. It was a comedy of errors as Mumbai lost the plot badly. (BCCI Image)