Despite failing to impress his fans with the willow, Rohit Sharma has led Mumbai Indians remarkably in the IPL 2017 so far as the team is riding a victory juggernaut that already carries four consecutive wins.
The tenth season of the world’s richest cricket league has completed almost two weeks, having hosted 19 matches so far. The table has turned and previous heroes have been defeated by the new ones in a bet to claim the throne. Here’s a quick look over what all happened last week in the ongoing IPL 2017.
Mumbai Indians remarkable return
Last week, Mumbai won three consecutive matches, beating Sunrisers Hyderabad, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Gujarat Lions in a row.
The two-time IPL champions started their 2017 campaign with a seven-wicket loss to Rising Pune Supergiant. However, they returned to the winning ways after defeating Kolkata Knight Riders by four wickets in a nail-biting clash.
Mumbai currently lead the points table with four victories in five matches and will look to continue winning momentum when they take on struggling Kings XI Punjab in their next match on April 20.
Nitish Rana rides consistency
The leaders Mumbai Indians find their core strength in their middle-order that is well-strengthened by Nitish Rana.
The 23-year-old Delhi boy has been the find of the IPL this year as the orange cap-holding batsman has scored 193 runs from five matches so far. Being the most consistent batsman in the side, Rana scored two fifties and excited the fans with 14 boundaries and nine sixes.
Besides Rana, Kieron Pollard has also been a delight to watch in the middle-order as he hit 164 runs in five matches. Pitch-hitting siblings Krunal and Hardik Pandya have been additional strength to the team when it’s chasing.
Fall of defending champions
In a turn of events, defending champions Sunrisers Hyderabad, who started their campaign in a picture-perfect manner, fell miserably in the second week.
David Warner-led Hyderabad suffered two consecutive defeats by the hands of Mumbai and Kolkata Knight Riders.
Earlier, they had routed RCB and Gujarat Lions in the first week of the IPL 2017.
Mumbai take full credit of the four-wicket win as they clinched it from the jaws of defeat. But the 17-run defeat to KKR was a result of poor batting display by SRH's top hitters David Warner, Shikhar Dhawan, Yuvraj Singh and Ben Cutting.
Gambhir leads the charge for KKR
KKR skipper Gautam Gambhir continued his daring-do as he singlehandedly led the side to two back-to-back victories.
Ranked second in the top-scorers’ chart, Gambhir has smashed 182 runs in four matches with two 50s. The 35-year-old batsman will look to come atop when KKR face Delhi Daredevils on Monday.
Among shiny skippers, Gambhir has outclassed Steve Smith and David Warner with his batting heroics. Smith is placed third with 180 runs, while fourth-ranked Warner has made 165 runs so far.
DD’s strongest bowling line-up
Having played just three matches, Delhi Daredevils has emerged as one of the strongest bowling side in the ongoing season.
Leading from front, Zaheer Khan is defying the age factor and coming up fierce and effective with ageing. The 38-year-old warhorse pacer has claimed five wickets in three matches.
Adding to joy, Zaheer has inspired the teammates such as Chris Morris and Pat Cummins to come up with good results. Morris took seven wickets at an impressive economy of 6.30, while Cummins claimed five wickets at an economy of 6.80 runs per over.
Spinner Shahbaz Nadeem has been the most economical bowler so far in the tournament with an economy rate of 4.90. He has bagged four wickets until now.
Pune break losing streak
Steve Smith-led Rising Pune Supergiant started their campaign with a healthy seven-wicket win over Mumbai, though failed miserably after a good start.
However, the last week saw RPS returning to the winning ways as they beat RCB by 27 runs to break the jinx.
The triumph after two consecutive defeats was a fair result of a balanced effort from the entire team. Nevertheless, MS Dhoni was the icing on the cake as he marked a thumping impression against Virat Kohli-led RCB.
Dhoni’s humongous six that hit the rooftop of the M Chinnaswamy Stadium was the best sight for Bengaluru spectators. Besides that, he contributed 28 runs and a swift stump-hit to dismiss AB de Villiers.