Heading into the Indian Premier League 2020 final on Tuesday, Mumbai Indians captain Rohit Sharma’s batting record in the playoff stage of the T20 tournament was far from impressive.
The 33-year-old is the fourth-highest run-getter in IPL history and has scored in heaps for his teams ever since he made his debut in the competition in 2008. He had a sensational record of winning titles too. But when it came to playoff matches, his record with the bat left a lot to be desired.
Before the title clash against Delhi Capitals in Dubai, Rohit had scored just 229 runs in 19 playoffs / semi-final innings with an average of 12.72. His only half-century came in the 2015 final, when his 26-ball 50 helped Mumbai Indians defeat Chennai Super Kings to bag their second IPL title.
In Qualifier 1 this season, Rohit’s confidence was further dented as he was dismissed for a first-ball duck by off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin. While one can always count on champion players to bounce back, Rohit’s form must’ve definitely been a cause of concern for Mumbai Indians. Also considering he missed a part of the season due to a left hamstring injury.
However, the right-hander raised his hand when his team needed him the most by playing a classy innings against Delhi in the final at the Dubai International Stadium on Tuesday.
Set a target of 157, Rohit came to the crease with a positive mindset and attacked Ashwin in the first over with a six over long-on even if it was a nervy moment. From there on, he paced his innings wonderfully to finish with 68 off 51 and set the game up for his team.
Rohit hit five fours and four sixes in his knock and upped the ante every time his team needed it. The trademark drives and pulls were used to great effect as Shreyas Iyer and his men struggled to find answers.
The Mumbaikar’s effort helped his team win the match by six wickets and claim the IPL trophy for a record-extending fifth time. It was Rohit’s fifth title as MI captain in five finals and sixth as a player in six finals.
Watch highlights of Rohit Sharma’s knock in the IPL 2020 final: