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Mumbai Indians crush RCB to clinch CL T20

Harbhajan Singh's Mumbai Indians beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 31 runs to clinch third edition of the Champions League T20 at Chepauk yesterday

Skipper Harbhajan Singh led from the front with a three-wicket haul as Mumbai Indians beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 31 runs to clinch the third edition of the Champions League T20 tournament here at Chepauk yesterday.


Champs: Mumbai Indians celebrate their 31-run victory over RCB
in the Champions League Twenty20 final match in Chennai
yesterday. PIC/AFP


Chasing a modest 140 on a typically sluggish surface here, Bangalore were eventually bundled out for 108 with four balls to spare. At the end of four overs of the run-chase with Bangalore racing to 38 for no loss, the Mallyas' enclosure appeared ready to shoot open the bubbly.

However, the three-over spell between overs five and seven, saw Bangalore lose two wickets for just four runs.  While Tillakaratne Dilshan (27) was cleaned up by Lanka teammate Lasith Malinga, Chris Gayle fell victim to Harbhajan's round-the-wicket line in the next over.


Eyes on ball: Harbhajan Singh takes a catch to dismiss Daniel
Vettori during the CLT20 final in Chennai yesterday. PIC/AFP


The duo's dismissal dried up the runs for Bangalore who lost further momentum when young leggie Yuzvendra Chahal bowled a flatter length at quick pace, conceding just nine runs in his first three overs including the scalps of Mayank Agarwal and Arun Karthik. Harbhajan came back to remove Daniel Vettori in the 17th over -- effectively ending any chance of a turnaround for the Bangalore outfit.

Earlier, Bangalore restricted Mumbai to 139 as skipper Vettori (2-30) and Raju Bhatkal (3-21), backed by a spirited fielding effort, tied down the Mumbai batsmen. Mumbai suffered three run-outs in their innings which included James Franklin who top-scored with 41.

Mumbai, who elected to bat, lost opener Aiden Blizzard to a terrible mix up that left owner Nita Ambani in a state of shock. Sarul Kanwar who had began his innings by hitting the first six of the match off the last ball of the first over from Dilshan, refused to go for the run when Blizzard played one to mid-off.

Ambati Rayudu joined Kanwar, who began to get value for his strokes. When Rayudu struck Sreenath Aravind over extra cover for a boundary, there was talk about the surface holding up for a 160-plus total. Rayudu and two-down James Franklin added 41 runs to resurrect the Mumbai innings before Vettori and Bhatkal got into the act. The pitch evidently began to slow down further and Mumbai lost wickets at regular intervals.

Even a 16-run cameo from Malinga helped Mumbai muster only 139 albeit it proved to be a winning total at the end of the night.

Brief scores: Mumbai Indians 139 (Franklin 41, Yadav 24, Bhatkal 3-21) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore 108 (Dilshan 27, Tiwary 17, Harbhajan Singh 3-20, Chahal 2-9, Malinga 2-23)

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