Popularly known as the 'El Clasico' of the IPL, the Mumbai Indians vs Chennai Super Kings fixture will kick off the second phase of IPL 2021 in the United Arab Emirates. The Dubai International Cricket Stadium will play host to a blockbuster encounter between the two most successful IPL franchises.
This match will happen on September 19, 2021. Interestingly, exactly one year ago, on September 19, 2020, the Mumbai Indians played against the Chennai Super Kings in the season opener of IPL 2020. The Super Kings emerged victorious in that contest, but the Mumbai-based franchise avenged that loss by winning their next two matches against the MS Dhoni-led outfit.
The previous encounter between the Mumbai Indians and the Chennai Super Kings happened during IPL 2021's first phase at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in Delhi. It was a high-scoring thriller where the two-time defending champions beat their arch-rivals by four wickets.
Ambati Rayudu, Faf du Plessis and Moeen Ali shone in the first innings of the IPL 2021 match between MI and CSK
The Mumbai Indians won the toss and invited the Chennai Super Kings to bat first in batting paradise at Arun Jaitley Stadium. Trent Boult (1/42) dismissed Ruturaj Gaikwad (4) on the fourth ball of the match, but a 108-run second-wicket partnership between Faf du Plessis (50) and Moeen Ali (58) guided the Chennai Super Kings past the 100-run mark inside 11 overs.
Moeen smashed five fours and five sixes in his excellent innings while du Plessis hit two fours and four maximums in his 28-ball 50. Kieron Pollard (2/12) and Jasprit Bumrah (1/56) brought the Mumbai Indians back into the IPL 2021 contest by taking three wickets in quick succession.
Bumrah broke the partnership between Ali and du Plessis by dismissing the former on the penultimate ball of the 11th over. Pollard bowled the next over and sent du Plessis and Suresh Raina (2) back to the dressing room on the last two balls.
It seemed like the Mumbai Indians would pull things back in their IPL 2021 match against the Super Kings.
However, Ambati Rayudu (72*) played one of the best knocks of IPL 2021 to take the Chennai Super Kings to 218/4 in 20 overs. Rayudu aggregated 72 runs off just 27 deliveries, smacking four fours and seven sixes. Ravindra Jadeja (22*) supported him well as the duo had an unbeaten 102-run partnership for the fifth wicket.
The Kieron Pollard show that ended the Chennai Super Kings' winning streak in IPL 2021
Chasing 219 to win, the Mumbai Indians got off to a decent start thanks to a 71-run opening stand between Quinton de Kock (38) and Rohit Sharma (35). However, once Shardul Thakur (1/56) broke the partnership by picking up Rohit's wicket, CSK bounced back by reducing MI to 81/3.
After Rohit's dismissal, de Kock handed a return catch to Moeen Ali (1/1) and Suryakumar Yadav (3) lost his wicket to Ravindra Jadeja (1/29). Kieron Pollard (87*), the most successful bowler for MI in the first innings and came to the team's rescue. He stitched up a 89-run fourth-wicket partnership with Krunal Pandya (32) to keep MI's hopes alive.
The odds were still in the Super Kings' favor because Mumbai needed 50 runs off the last four overs. Sam Curran's three-wicket haul further made the run-chase difficult for Mumbai. The English all-rounder dismissed the Pandya brothers and Jimmy Neesham (0) to end with figures of 4-0-34-3.
But Pollard was still out there in the middle, and the pressure was on Lungi Ngidi, who had 16 runs to defend off the final over. Ngidi started off with a dot ball before Pollard hit two boundaries off the next two deliveries. A dot ball brought the equation down to 8 off 2.
Kieron Pollard then did what he is best known for and smashed Ngidi's full-toss out of the park. Requiring 2 to win from the final ball, Pollard guided a yorker in the direction of the long-on fielder. Dhawal Kulkarni and Pollard ran two before du Plessis could throw the ball for a run-out. MI beat CSK by two wickets to end their five-match winning streak in the IPL 2021.
Fans will hope for another thriller when the two teams meet again in the IPL 2021. Kieron Pollard won the Man of the Match award in the first IPL 2021 meeting between MI and CSK for his all-round brilliance.