Fortitude takes Mumbai Indians to top of the League

Apurv Shukla 

Mumbai Indians won their third Indian Premier League (IPL) title by beating Pune Super giants by 1 run in the finals at Hyderabad.

The tenth edition of IPL produced a low scoring but thrilling final.

Mumbai Indians after winning the toss elected to bat (for the second time in the event) and scored the lowest total of all IPL finals in 129.

‘Man of the Match’ Krunal Pandya was the top scorer with 47 runs. In reply, Pune aided by Captain Steven Smith’s 51 ran Mumbai close, but were unable to get four required of the last ball to win.

Successful Franchise

Mumbai Indians topped the league stage, and won the IPL for the third time since 2012, becoming the most successful IPL franchise in the process.

It was the team’s combined brilliance that contributed to Mumbai’s success.

Whether it was keeper Parthiv Patel who opened the batting and ended up being the season’s highest run getter for his team, or the Pandya brothers- Hardik and Krunal; all chipped in with useful all-round contributions.

Jasprit Bumrah and Auckland’s Mitchell McClenghan were the most successful bowlers for the Nita Ambani owned franchise.

For the team’s new coach – former Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayewardene, it was a superb debut.

For Pune, it was an amazing turnaround after their second to last finish last year.

They started the season with a new captain in Steven Smith, replacing MS Dhoni.

Fleming coaching

Former Black Caps captain Stephen Fleming coached the team to within a whisker of a maiden IPL title.

Jaydev Unadkat was the best bowler for the franchise, and has enhanced his chances to play for India in the near future by picking 24 wickets at the event.

Another name to watch out from Pune will be Washington Sundar.

The teenager impressed everyone with his off spin and temperament on his debut in IPL. IPL 10’s most expensive buy –England’s Ben Stokes had a good tournament being amongst the wickets and scoring valuable runs.

He missed the finals though, going back to commitments for England – an absence that proved costly for Pune.

Other mentionable names

2016 champions Sunrisers Hyderabad had a good event until losing in the play offs to Kolkata. India players Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shikhar Dhawan were the standout players for the southern franchise.

Kumar was the most successful bowler at this year’s IPL picking 26 wickets. His excellent form is good news for India s they head into the Champions trophy in England, where conditions should suit Kumar’s swing bowling.

Kolkata skipper Gautam Gambhir had a productive IPL.

He scored 498 runs, bringing him ever closer to that recall to Team India.

Constant changing of their batting order though Kolkata dear, as they failed to make it to the finals.

Positive effect

IPL today is the biggest T-20 league in the world.

Its success is having a positive effect on Indian cricket.

A substantial portion of the revenue generated is being pumped back to make grassroots cricket stronger in India.

The result was that domestic players in India now receive better remuneration and all premier domestic tournaments are televised.

Facilities for budding cricketers and infrastructure at stadiums have also improved substantially. IPL has provided Indian players a chance to play with international stars and is giving overseas players an opportunity to hone their skills in Indian conditions.

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