Mumbai v Rajasthan, IPL 2011, Mumbai May 20, 2011

Mumbai humbled by the other Shane


Rajasthan Royals 134 for 0 (Watson 89, Dravid 43) beat Mumbai Indians 133 for 5 (Rohit 58, Watson 3-19) by ten wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

The prospect of a final face-off between Sachin Tendulkar and Shane Warne had dominated the build-up to this clash, but on the field it was overshadowed by an imposing performance from Shane Watson. Not only did he deliver a fitting farewell for his captain from competitive cricket, he also left Mumbai Indians under serious pressure to keep their qualification chances alive following a third straight defeat. For someone who had struggled to capitalise on starts through this tournament, Watson compensated with a splendid all-round effort, with each of his crushing blows serving Mumbai a painful reminder of what they should have achieved on a good pitch.

The Tendulkar-Warne contest should have been a non-event as left-arm spinner Ankeet Chavan trapped Tendulkar twice in front, only for umpire Paul Reiffel to think otherwise. Backed up by his disciplined bowling at one end, Watson dismissed T Suman and Ambati Rayudu in successive overs from the other, depriving the hosts of the attacking start they would have hoped for after choosing to bat. And just as Kieron Pollard had warmed up at the death after muscling a couple of boundaries, Watson cleaned him up to restrict Mumbai to a below-par total, one that was given some respectability by a classy half-century from Rohit Sharma.

It didn't take long for Watson to set about punishing Mumbai, as he smote Harbhajan Singh for two massive sixes over midwicket in the second over of the chase. He followed that up by drilling Lasith Malinga past mid-off in an over that perhaps produced his only moment of discomfort. Malinga responded venomously, knocking back Watson's chin with a bouncer - it escaped the grill, there would have been some pain but Watson didn't flinch. His own response? A memorable counterattack, pulling Malinga each time he dropped short, his next seven balls producing three fours, a flat six and a stunned crowd not used to seeing their star-studded home team being overwhelmed in that manner.

A sense of resignation was felt in the crowd, if not among the players, when Watson smacked Harbhajan for three consecutive fours in his comeback over, while Rahul Dravid, happy to play the supporting role, showed his own class with some delightful boundaries off Pollard and Munaf Patel. The pair remained unbeaten, Rajasthan cantered home, marking a satisfactory end after their turmoil-filled build-up to the tournament.

Rohit had won praise from Warne as one of the most exciting talents in Indian cricket, and he undoubtedly would have impressed his opposing captain with his performance today. He quickly took the lead in the stand with Tendulkar, his stand-out shot being an imposing drive against Warne through extra cover, matched by a delightful punch in the same region off Johan Botha who couldn't restrain Rohit despite chasing him as he made room.

Rohit used his feet well to spin, and stepped up in the late overs after Tendulkar perished to an upper cut off Amit Singh. Warne though, wasn't finishing his spell without a cheer. His final victory with the ball was the stumping of Rohit, stunned by the turn and losing his bat to square leg with a wild swing gone bad. At the end of the game, Warne was still smiling while Mumbai stayed baffled.

Siddhartha Talya is a sub editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Michael on May 22, 2011, 12:54 GMT

    @sugumarrising- You are a valid point buddy. All this anti-sachin and anti-MI comments come from the fact that they are over-hyped and kind of declared winners even before the tournament kicks off. And you simply can't ignore the MI owners influence over BCCI, bending the IPL rules to suit their needs (player retention rule, pocketing sachin as icon player, introduction of playoffs, since MI chokes in KOs, imposing all possible penalties on RRs). I will give you a interesting piece of stat. As the auction penalty was not enough for RR, they were scheduled to play the stronger sides twice and weaker only once. So RR plays MI, CSK, RCB, KKR (top 4) & KT twice and with PWI, DC, DD & KIP only once. Pure coincidence or a conspiracy! Some people simply can't digest the underdogs winning the inaugural edition and most powerful team winning none!

  • sugumar on May 22, 2011, 8:30 GMT

    @Quazar am not here to write hate comments about MI, the fact is MI were poor in 2008,2009 ipl, they started playing well only in 2010, but on the other side CSK have won the ipl & champions league in 2010, RCB apart from the 2008 season they have always performed wonderfully reaching semifinal twice @ reaching final ones, RR are the champions of 2008, till now i don't think they have too many big foreign names except watson,taylor, but still they are performing steadily, we started to write about MI only bcoz of certain fans, commentators, & experts writing about MI before the start of the season as the favourites, the most annoying thing before this years ipl clash between MI & CSK league game is i saw in one newspaper that the champions is the underdogs & they have to play out of their skin to win MI, what a ridiculous comment, personally i feel MI should win the ipl afterwards we will accept, without winning don't compare them with proven teams.

  • Ramesh on May 21, 2011, 16:24 GMT

    Finally MI & KKR Fans will be happy, after KXIP making a mess in their must win league match against DC. Now the battle for the positions in playoffs to be happen tomorrow (22/05/11) in DLF IPL Super Sunday between the top four teams. Its RCB vs CSK and MI vs KKR. Lets see the probable playoff matches based on Sunday's result. Case 1: IF CSK Win & MI win - Qualifier 1 - CSK vs MI , Eliminator - RCB vs KKR. Case 2: IF CSK Win & KKR win - Qualifier 1 - CSK vs KKR, Eliminator - RCB vs MI. Case 3: IF RCB Win & MI win - Qualifier 1- RCB vs CSK, Eliminator - MI vs KKR. Case 4: IF RCB Win & KKR win - Qualifier 1-RCB vs CSK (or) KKR, Eliminator - KKR (or) CSK vs MI Since in case 4 CSK & KKR have almost equal run rate, the position may differ. Lets see What happens and whom is going to play whom in the play-offs.

  • Rokky on May 21, 2011, 16:07 GMT

    I am seeing lots of anti-sachin comments here which makes me really wonder what does he needs to please them. Can you imagine if you deduct his runs from MI score what others are contributating. Now there will be debate that he uses lots of balls to get those runs. SO what is he suppose to do if he is losing partners at other end. And Guys wishing for him to retire, Can you please check the amount of runs he is still getting and please for god sake do not comment that his runs are in losing cause. Is it his fault that our ballers are not able to restrict opposition or it is his fault that he is still scoring. Yeah there will be lots of guys thinking of me to be Die hard fan of Sachin, but the Guy is still scoring runs. and @ Quazar thanks for the stats, but I guess there will be lots of them even trying to prove them wrong :( @pkm124 which team you are supporting, please ask their adminsitrator, if Sachin is willing to play from their team what their asn will be :)

  • Balaji on May 21, 2011, 16:04 GMT

    Just goes to show how poor the mumbai team is. There is absolutely too much hype being created about the team and about sachin as well. No doubt sachin is a great player, but he is just good enough to perform in this format. This format is not just about how many runs you score, its about how quickly you get them. Sachin is not capable to ripping apart a bowler.As far as Malinga is concerned, his bowling was torn apart by shane watson and he has a lot of thinking to do. A guy who quit test cricket just for the sake of playing in the IPL... well he has to come up with a better show. I think CSK is again going to show who is the boss to MI.

  • rahul on May 21, 2011, 14:58 GMT

    sorry to all the critisizers of mumbai indians punjab is being thumped badly by deccan and THE SACHIN and mumbai are through....yeah

  • Bheem on May 21, 2011, 13:46 GMT

    @sugumarrising ... I don't know why you hate MI so much. But there is not a single post on this page claiming that MI are above and beyond all other teams, or that they are invincible... so i don't know to whom you are responding. This is T20... nobody is invincible. KKR thumped Kings XI, who then thumped them back, RR got thumped by Kochi, and then RR thumped MI. Yes, CSK are a terrific side, and Dhoni is a terrific captain... nobody has said either is poor. So not sure why all your hate...

  • karthy on May 21, 2011, 10:55 GMT

    sachin is a excellent batsman,cricketer, neat gentleman but he is a very poor captain.

  • vinod on May 21, 2011, 10:52 GMT

    @sugumarrising well said dude .....really the media and commentators are treating MI as a only team that is playing IPL ......and showering with praises ....even though it is such an substandard team.....and more the fans are jealous of CSK's rise ...."success breeds contempt ".....hail CSK

  • Dummy4 on May 21, 2011, 10:24 GMT

    Its good to be adamant fan, and also back ur team and players ... but how do u rate them ... ofcourse scoring centuries and half-centuries is great .. but whats the point if they dont contribute in winning the match .. SRT is greatest batsmen of all time and no one will come even close to him ... still there is something is called resource utilization and he is NOT GOOD AT IT ... plz accept this .. especially MI franchise should understand and take the pressure off him so that he can give his best and MI wins ... individual spark helps in a shorter run, its team as a unit that makes a side great ... and a captain who can bring out the best in the players, take crucial decisions, take decisive calls and keeps his composure calm even in the strongest of winds ... may MI franchise understand this before its too late ... may GOD(real one/SRT) bless MI ...

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