Durban: An absolute thrilling cameo from Virat Kohli (47 off 24 balls) turned the 165-run chase into a spine-chilling last-ball climax that eventually ended with Bangalore losing by just two runs at Kingsmead on Sunday. Mumbai, though, crashed out of the tournament despite winning.
Chasing the Mumbai score after Sachin Tendulkar elected to bat first, Old-guards Rahul Dravid and Jacques Kallis got Bangalore off to a flying start until debutant Abu Nechim struck to remove Kallis (15) and Dwayne Bravo got Robin Uthappa (6) and Ross Taylor (9) caught in quick succession to give Mumbai much-needed breakthroughs.
Indian Statesman Dravid meanwhile completed his half century as the Bangalore team neared 100. But as soon as they crossed the triple-figure mark, Harbhajan Singh castled big-hitting Cameron White (7) to tilt scales in Mumbai's favour.
Meanwhile, Virat Kohli's innings soon gathered momentum, whacking Nechim for a six. The young debutant, though, came back well in the same over to control the damage.
The Delhi batsman Kohli, playing for Bangalore, hit the death-over expert Malinga for three consecutive boundaries in the penultimate over to leave his team needing 13 runs off the last six balls.
Such was the impact of Kohli's 24-ball 47 runs, that it made Dravid's 71-run effort look pedestrian but in the end, both didn't prove enough.
Needing three off the last Zaheer Khan ball, a top-edge off Kohli went straight up that saw wicketkeeper Ambati Rayudu circling under it to safely glove the ball and the match for Mumbai.
Man of the Match Dwayne Bravo was the most successful bowler for Mumbai taking 2/23 in his four overs while Zaheer, Nechim and Harbhajan took one apiece.
Earlier in the evening, Bangalore not only kept Mumbai's scoring in check but also continued to chip in at the wickets, restricting Sachin's team to a scoring rate of just over six at the halfway stage.
Praveen Kumar removed Sachin (11) and Rayudu (3) was lapped in the slips by Rahul Dravid off Vinay Kumar that signaled the worst possible start for Mumbai.
Bangalore bowlers continued to thwart every run-making attempt, with Kallis removing fellow-countrymen Duminy (10) in the process.
Steyn eventually marked his run-up in the 11th over and peppered Tiwary with fast short-pitched stuff. The tactics of holding Steyn back paid the richest dividends possible when Steyn gunned down both Dhawan (41) and the dangerman Pollard (0), reducing Mumbai to a sorry-looking 84/5 in 13 overs.
Bravo's dropped caught and bowled chance by Kumble proved costly, with the West Indian turning it on for Mumbai with a 17-ball cameo of 29 runs. It turned out to be the much-needed fillip for the Mumbai innings that looked in tatters for the most part.
The 18th over, bowled by Kumble, went for 22 runs, where Bravo hit two towering sixes and a boundary. It also brought up the 50-run partnership between Bravo and Tiwary.
Steyn, though, soon took care of Bravo, which saw Tiwary taking over with 38 runs of 30 balls. And when Harbhajan (14) too got a few useful runs at the end, the IPL runners-up notched up a challenging 165/7.
Anil Kumble not only went wicket-less but gave away 45 runs in his four overs. Daley Steyn was the pick of the Bangalore bowlers with 3/26.
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