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IPL Season 9: Finch does it again as Gujarat Lions beat Mumbai Indians in last ball thriller

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Aaron Finch scored his third half century in as many games, and the Gujarat Lions reclaimed sole possession of top spot in the Indian Premier League standings with their third win in succession as the Australian opener pummeled Jasprit Bumrah's ill-advised bouncer on the final ball of the match to the boundary to register a 3 wicket win for the visitors in a match that was a lot closer than it really should have been.

The Gujarat Lions won the toss and unsurprisingly invited the Mumbai Indians to have a bat at the Wankhede Stadium. The visitors dominated the (pardon the pun) lions share of the the innings as Mumbai slumped to 99-7 in 17 overs before some late striking from Tim Southee (25 from 11 balls) and Krunal Pandya (20* from 11) gave the hosts a fighting total of 143-8.

Dhawal Kulkarni and Pravin Tambe had done the early damage, taking 4 wickets between them, while Shadab Jakati, James Faulkner and Dwayne Bravo chipped in with 1 each. Faulkner and Bravo though were taken for plenty in the last few overs as Mumbai threw their bat at everything and profited.

Aaron Finch once again led Gujarat's chase ably, making an unbeaten 67 from 54 balls, batting through the innings, but rather ridiculously not even facing half the deliveries bowled.

After Brendon McCullum fell cheaply to Bumrah for 6, Finch and Suresh Raina (27) added 53 for the second wicket, and for large parts appeared to be cruising to victory. Mitchell McClenaghan had different ideas, and took 4-21 in his 4 overs to make it an exciting finish, taking 2-2 from the 19th over, leaving Bumrah with 11 to defend in the last over.

Aaron Finch, hobbling with a dodgy hamstring, and potentially as a result playing in his last game of the IPL, ran the twos necessary to take the game down to the wire, while Kulkarni, who had starred with the ball earlier, did the business with the bat in the final over, striking Bumrah over mid-off for a boundary.

With 1 required to win from the last ball, Bumrah knocked it in short to Finch with the field up and the Australian predictably dispatched it over mid-wicket to secure the victory.

It was a heart-breaking defeat for the Mumbai Indians, having come so close to rescuing the game, but Gujarat were deserving winners in the end, staying top of the table with 6 points from 3 games.


Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (c), Parthiv Patel (wk), Hardik Pandya, Jos Buttler, Keiron Pollard, Ambati Rayudu, Harbhajan Singh, Krunal Pandya, Tim Southee, Mitchell McClenaghan, Jasprit Bumrah

Gujarat Lions: Aaron Finch, Brendon McCullum, Suresh Raina (c), Dwayne Bravo, Dinesh Karthik (wk), James Faulkner, AD Nath, Praveen Kumar, Shadab Jakati, Dhawal Kulkarni, Pravin Tambe

Mini Scorecard:

Mumbai Indians 143-8 (20 overs, 7.15rpo)

P Patel 34 (29) D Kulkarni 2-19 (4)

T Southee 25 (11) P Tambe 2-12 (2)

Gujarat Lions 147-7 (20 overs, 7.35rpo)

A Finch 67* (54) M McClenaghan 4-21 (4)

S Raina 27 (22) J Bumrah 2-32 (4)

Gujarat Lions win by 3 wickets