Zeenews Sports Bureau
New Delhi: It is going to be an all IPL final as Daniel Vettori's RCB take on Harbhajan’s Mumbai Indians in the summit clash of the Champions League T20 2011.
Without their maverick captain Sachin Tendulkar, MI has had a topsy-turvy path to the finals producing results that could have sent an ardent fan into frenzy while RCB made a remarkable comeback after suffering back to back defeats; reaching the finals courtesy Virat Kohli and big hitting Jamaican southpaw Chris Gayle, leaving the memories of an ordinary start to their campaign well behind.
In their semi final encounters both of them had to slug it out till the end to scrape past their opponents even though Bangalore did manage to finish the game with nine balls to spare but still had to chase down a mammoth 200 plus total.
Lasith Malinga took four wickets and Aiden Blizzard slammed a 39-ball 54 but it was James Franklin's two-wicket burst at the 19th over which set up the win for Mumbai Indians in the nail-biting semifinal.
Mumbai Indians, who made 160 for 5, won by 10 runs, but not before surviving some anxious moments as Somerset came within shouting distance of winning before losing four wickets in the last two overs.
RCB chased down a score of 203 runs set by New South Wales on Friday; overhauling the target as Gayle and Kohli used their long handle to outshine David Warner’s second successive century of the tournament with six wickets in hand and with nine balls to spare.
Both the teams sport a different look than when they played in the 2011 edition of the IPL and are without their premier batsmen and bowlers. Mumbai Indians are sorely missing the services of Tendulkar even though slinger Malinga has almost won them all of their CL matches. Their problem is with the batting and fielding.
RCB are without AB de Villiers and Zaheer Khan but they have the big hitters in the squad- Gayle, Dilshan and Kohli. Their area of concern happens to be the bowling department that got them into precarious positions at crucial times leaving them to chase 200 plus scores on successive occasions.
The teams have never won an IPL tournament and it would be the first ever silverware in their empty trophy cabinet post Sunday’s clash. Again, the championship will be won by an Indian team as Dhoni’s Chennai Super Kings won the 2010 edition of the tournament. Nevertheless, we would see a new Champion being crowned on Sunday.