Mumbai Indians v Kochi Tuskers Kerala, IPL 2011, Mumbai April 15, 2011

Kochi upstage Tendulkar's century


Kochi Tuskers Kerala 184 for 2 (McCullum 81, Jayawardene 56) beat Mumbai Indians 182 for 2 (Tendulkar 100*, Rayudu 53) by eight wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Two weeks ago, the crowd at the Wankhede was delirious though a fervently anticipated Sachin Tendulkar century didn't materialise. On Friday, the same crowd went home dejected despite Tendulkar crafting his first Twenty20 century, as Kochi Tuskers Kerala busted their party with one of the most memorable chases in IPL history.

Two of the world's finest Twenty20 batsmen, Brendon McCullum and Mahela Jayawardene, constructed chalk-and-cheese half-centuries to power Kochi's pursuit of 183. Both perished to Lasith Malinga's deadly deliveries but Kochi, who had stumbled in the final stretch of their first two games, didn't slip up this time as Ravindra Jadeja and Brad Hodge muscled boundaries to finish the game with an over to spare.

Tendulkar's effort checked off another item on his ever-shrinking to-do list, and Mumbai ran up a tall total without needing contributions from Rohit Sharma, Andrew Symonds and Kieron Pollard. It was then assumed that the bowlers would make the rest of the game a formality, but McCullum firmly put that assumption to rest by muscling three boundaries between mid-off and cover in Malinga's second over. The next big jump came in the sixth over from Pollard as McCullum swatted a four past midwicket and Jayawardene eased boundaries behind square on either side of the wicket.

The Mumbai fielding made things worse for the home team. Rohit Sharma dropped McCullum at first slip off the first ball, and Jayawardene was given a life by Ali Murtuza at backward point.

McCullum kept skating out of the crease and lashing the ball through the off side right through his innings, while Jayawardene was content shuffling across and using the bowler's pace, rarely powering the ball. The difference between the two batsmen's innings was highlighted in the ninth over as McCullum smashed the first ball over long-off, and Jayawardene reverse-paddled the fifth ball off the back of the bat for four.

With dew making it difficult for the bowlers to grip the ball, both batsmen kept picking off the boundaries. Kochi were in command by the 14th over as they moved to 128 for 0 when Jayawardene deftly poked a Malinga delivery past the keeper towards a delighted Kochi dug-out. Next ball, Malinga removed Jayawardene with a yorker which prompted a surprise promotion for Jadeja. McCullum, though, kept Kochi on top with a couple of scythed boundaries in the 17th over that worsened Pollard's evening.

With 27 needed off three overs, and nine wickets in hand, Mumbai gambled by bringing on Malinga for his final over. He delivered by bowling McCullum first ball, but Hodge eased Kochi's anxieties with two walloped boundaries off the rest of the over. Jadeja, who has received plenty of criticism over the past two years, then justified his promotion with a couple of swiped sixes off Murtaza Ali to finish off Mumbai with an over to go.

It was the Kochi's franchise first IPL win and Mumbai's first defeat of the season, a result few predicted after Tendulkar had combined power and placement to reach a memorable century. It, however, came after a nervy start: Tendulkar was nearly run out on 0, umpire Paul Reiffel turned down two lbw appeals from Vinay Kumar which should have been given. There was also a close call for caught behind, and an outside edge off Thisara Perera that just beat the keeper.

Mumbai made relatively sedate progress, reaching 57 in eight overs before losing Davy Jacobs. The in-form Ambati Rayudu immediately took charge, blasting two sixes off Raiphi Gomez. A series of powerfully hit straight boundaries took him to 44, when the partnership had realised 64.

The final five overs turned into a Tendulkar show as he plundered 45 runs. Tendulkar showed how he could finesse the ball or force it depending on his mood: in the 16th over, a short ball on legstump was helped over fine leg for six, and a length ball outside off was pummelled over long-on for six more as 20 came off the over. A helicopter shot for four and a slugged six over midwicket took him to 90 after 19 overs.

Tendulkar proceeded to paddle a four past short fine leg, and bludgeon another past long-on before reaching his ton with a push to mid-off off the final delivery of the innings. The decibel levels shot up in the stands, but it was a muted celebration from Tendulkar himself on reaching the milestone.

Neither he nor the crowd were celebrating at the end of the game. One of the bigger worries for a formidable Mumbai unit was how dependent their attack was on Malinga's form, something they will have to address after losing despite a solid batting effort.

Siddarth Ravindran is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dharitri on April 18, 2011, 17:06 GMT

    You can easily a sharp contrast between Sachin's attitude and Dhoni's attitude. Dhoni made several risky decisions during the world cup (and many of them I didn't like and thought they were bound to fail). But, he backed them and took the risjy approach even though he knew he will be crucified, if his decisions backfires and India fails to win WC. But, he was not selfish like Sachin about his personal records and just did what India needed to win. I thought the most audacious and unselfish step from Dhoni was coming ahead of yuvi in the final and he would have been literally crucified, if India would have failed then. But, fitting he played a very good, possibly a great innings to win the WC while Sachin is yet to play a very good innings in any WC knock out matches even after playing in 6 WCs. I personally think this is what makes someone great, not just scoring buckets of runs for personal record.

  • Dharitri on April 18, 2011, 16:49 GMT

    I don't understand why the Sachin fans start to personally abuse the critics of sachin. This just derails a good argument. When Lara made a century, he could win most of the matches and lost only two against strong teams even though most of the time he was batting for a third rate team. But, Sachin couldn't win 12 matches against strong teams when he made a century even though he played for a much stronger team. The question is why is it so? And the answer is probably not obvious. But, I can always see some kind of selfishness in his approach for personal records which always affects team's winning chance. I've always seen him slowing down near his century, critically affecting the team's momentum. Of course, others not performing is one of the important reasons for defeat. But, how Lara can win matches without any major contribution from others while Sachin fails in so many such cases in spite of being touted as a great batsman?

  • Dummy4 on April 18, 2011, 9:29 GMT

    If i would tell like this that if someone lends a huge money to some other person and that person spends all his money in a useless things then will u blame the the person who has given the money or the person who has spend the money... i think the answer of this question is enough for asking Sachin about his century....

  • Sham on April 18, 2011, 9:09 GMT

    Hey!! C'mon guys!! he deservedd dis century and tat too @ the age of 38!!! Whoever is hating sachin here, dey just think tat dey are rite and jus want to stand seperatly from others!! He played his innings but his 4 Well ranked bowlers dint bowl properly!! i agree he's not as gambler as dhoni but we shuld respect him!! Ppl are talkin tat he scored a single in last ball but wat abt jacobs who scored 12 from 21 balls!! he he!! he dint evenn celebrate his century becoz he wanted 2 score boundary in d last ball!!

  • Dummy4 on April 18, 2011, 3:13 GMT

    People like "moonxi" are jealous of sachin for last may years and will be for many many coming far his 13 ceturies in losing cause are concerned,it is simple to see that he did a splendid job by scoring his centuries for team score.It is team and especially weak bowling who could not rise to the ocassion.That is why people say that if sachin had been in Australia or south africa,he might have 70 centuires in ODI and all of them in win.period. Also since his centuires in losing cause are mainly against strong teams,that proves that other team members were mediocre against strong teams,while tendulaker being such a champ played fab against any of the attack,thus proving his greatness.Long live champ.shame to critics.

  • cric on April 18, 2011, 2:28 GMT

    I think people should not blame sachin for losing the match. A century in any T20 game is a match winning performance. He was absolutely brilliant with his batting. I don't think he could have done any better. Sometimes it do happen that when a team member does brilliant work but team as a whole fails to cross the line. It can happen to anyone. It happened to Yuvraj singh today. He took 4 wkts and scored 60 odd runs but his team still lost the match. Why people don't blame him like they do for sachin? so please stop making unnecessary comments about the master and just enjoy his batting.

  • Dharitri on April 17, 2011, 19:31 GMT

    Even assuming the last ball was difficult to hit, he could have swung his bat as hard as possible. Even if it was an edge, there was a high chance that he could have taken a single and with little luck it could have gone for a boundary. There was some chance that he could have been out or he could not have taken a single to miss his century. Tendulkar is very shrewd and he was perfectly aware of this. So, he just avoided any risk and took the safest approach to century and in the process cost few valuable runs for the team which could have changed the outcome of the match.

  • Dummy4 on April 17, 2011, 11:58 GMT

    i think that was a good show of display by mumbai indians specially 4rm their captain sachin tendulkar magnificent innings of making 100 4rm 66 balls & ambati rayudu making 53 4rm 33 balls but today there fielding not up2 the mark ........i knw they can improve this very soon & may give their 100% on next match.......all the best 4 next match mumbai & also all the best 2 all the players of mumbai & i also think that all the players shoul d take the responsibilty not depend on any1 player in team

  • Dummy4 on April 17, 2011, 10:31 GMT

    i was 100%sure that mumbai will after sachin's fantastic century but unfortunetely bowler did the damage i am so sad for that tough luck sachin next time we should win best of luck sachin paaji

  • BALASUBRAMANIAN on April 17, 2011, 8:07 GMT

    The debate why Sachin's centuries are going in vain will rage on until Sachin hangs up his boots and might be even after that. It is a fact that Sachin has played very many match winning knocks without going to the three figure mark. He is a good batsman etc. etc. etc. What people are talking about is the phobia "Sachin's century in a match, his team is losing the match and this has been more pronounced in recent times than in the past. Sridhar Srigiriraju summed up the match nicely when he commented "God lost in God's own country"

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