IPL 2008 - Rajasthan Royals v Chennai Super Kings
CSK 163/5 (Raina 43, Parthiv 38; Yusuf Pathan 3/22) lost to RR 164/7 in 20 overs (Yusuf 56) by three wickets.
What better way to begin than with the very first IPL final? June 1, 2008 saw the story of the underdog make a fitting finish as Rajasthan Royals trumped Chennai Super Kings in a thrilling final.
Throughout the campaign, Rajasthan were the neutrals' favourite. They didn't have too many big names and threw in plenty of surprises with Shane Warne leading a young bunch from the front. Chennai, on the other hand, had names like MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Michael Hussey, Matthew Hayden and Muttiah Muralitharan. Although the two Australians weren't there for the final, they still had the bigger stars.
That didn't matter on the big day. Chennai batted first and made 163 for 5 - a good enough score for the big final. Rajasthan were going nowhere in the chase at 42 for 3 in the seventh over. However, Yusuf Pathan (56 off 39) kept Rajasthan in the hunt with a masterly knock. When Yusuf fell, the game titled in Chennai's favor with the equation reading 21 off 14 balls with just three wickets in hand. It came down to 8 off 6 when, fittingly, Shane Warne and Sohail Tanvir took Rajasthan to an unforgettable win.
IPL 2010 - Chennai Super Kings v Mumbai Indians
CSK 168/5 (Raina 57*) beat MI 146/9 (Tendulkar 48) by 22 runs
CSK wouldn't have made it this far if not for a stunning Dhoni innings against Kings XI Punjab in Dharamsala in their last league game. That game is now part of the CSK folklore, and more importantly, gave CSK momentum going into the knockouts.
It was a clash of two mighty teams. M Vijay, Hussey, Raina, Dhoni, Muralitharan on one side. Sachin Tendulkar, Harbhajan Singh, Lasith Malinga and Kieron Pollard on the other. CSK scored 168 for 5 in their 20 overs, with Suresh Raina scoring a half-century. A competitive score given the occasion, but not a massive one considering the venue. Mumbai had a steady start in the chase with 73 for 2 in the 12th over, with Tendulkar in the middle. All that changed quickly as CSK's spinners reduced MI to 114 for 6. Yet, the game wasn't done as Pollard got going, smashing 27 off 10. That's when Dhoni's master strategy came to the fore; he had a mid off and a long off in position and asked Albie Morkel to bowl full. He did just that, and Pollard drove straight to mid off. Mumbai's chances ended, and Chennai Super Kings won their first trophy.
IPL 2012 - Kolkata Knight Riders v Chennai Super Kings
CSK 190/3 (Hussey 54, Raina 73) lost to KKR 192/5 (Bisla 89, Kallis 69) by five wickets.
CSK were on a hat-trick when they went into the final in their 'Den' against Kolkata Knight Riders. They had won the trophy the previous two years, and were largely the favourites to make it three in three. The chances only became brighter when they scored 190 for 3 in their 20 overs, with Hussey and Raina scoring half-centuries.
But T20, and IPL, is all about the unknowns becoming stars. One such star rose to kill CSK's party that night. Manvindar Bisla, the wicketkeeper-opener, came out of nowhere to play an innings of a lifetime. Bisla and Jacques Kallis (69 off 49) added 136 for the second wicket but CSK fought back with late wickets to take the game deep. The equation came down to 16 off 7 when Kallis fell, before Shakib Al Hasan and Manoj Tiwary took them home in style.
IPL 2016 - Sunrisers Hyderabad v Royal Challengers Bangalore
SRH 208/7 (Warner 69, Ben Cutting 39*) beat RCB 200/7 (Gayle 76, Kohli 54).
The IPL was set to have a new winner as Sunrisers Hyderabad and Royal Challengers Bangalore locked horns at the M Chinnaswamy stadium. It was a case of bowling v batting; Hyderabad had a superb bowling unit backed by David Warner. Bangalore had Virat Kohli in the form of his life, having scored almost 1000 runs in the season!
Hyderabad needed Warner to step up. And he did, scoring 69 off 38 to push the side to a massive 208 for 7. It was a small ground, but 208 in a final was still a huge score, even if Kohli and de Villiers were in form.
But Bangalore were never out of the game. Chris Gayle and Kohli went crazy in a 114-run opening stand off just 10.3 overs. But once those two went, their middle order fizzled out under pressure. Bangalore needed 30 off 12, and 18 off 6, but fell eight short.
IPL 2017 - Mumbai Indians v Rising Pune Supergiant
MI 129/8 (Krunal Pandya 47) beat RPS 128/6 in 20 overs (Steve Smith 51, Ajinkya Rahane 44; Mitchell Johnson 3/26, Jasprit Bumrah 2/26).
The newcomers or the veterans? Mumbai had won the IPL twice. Pune were in their second year in the tournament. Pune had beaten Mumbai thrice in the season, and were in top form. It seemed like they would make it 4 out of 4 when they restricted Mumbai to just 129/8 in 20 overs.
The chase motored on, with captain Steve Smith scoring a half-century. Pune needed just 33 runs from 24 balls with eight wickets in hand, but somehow lost momentum.
Smith kept them in the game and brought the equation to 11 off 6 with Mitchell Johnson bowling the final over.
Next three balls: 4 W W. Equation: 7 off 3. That came down to 4 off 1 with Dan Christian needing to find the boundary, but he managed just two. Mumbai sneaked in from nowhere. Pune went home, and away from the IPL, ending on the wrong side of perhaps the most thrilling IPL final.
First Published: May 12, 2019, 11:17 AM IST