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WPL 2023: Mumbai Indians Trump RCB by 4 Wickets, Play UP in Friday's Eliminator

WPL 2023: Although second-placed Delhi Capitals have a game in hand, Mumbai Indians are currently topping the table.

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Mumbai Indians won their final league stage match of the 2023 Women’s Premier League, defeating Royal Challengers Bangalore by 4 wickets, but the victory was not enough to get them a direct ticket to Sunday's final.

After restricting Smriti Mandhana’s team to 125/9 at the Dr DY Patil Sports Academy, Harmanpreet Kaur’s batters took only 16.3 overs to secure two important points for the team. However, with Delhi Capitals beating UP Warriorz by 5 wickets in the final league match of the season, it's Meg Lanning's side that's entered the final and Mumbai will play UP in the Eliminator on Friday.

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Being asked to bat first, Bangalore’s start was far from what the team would have desired, with a miscommunication resulting in the dismissal of Sophie Devine – the White Ferns' opener who had just played the tournament’s best knock in her team's previous fixture.

With no acceleration, Bangalore surprisingly stuck to their dullsville stance, although, whilst ensuring every batter gets a start. Heather Knight did, scoring 12 runs in 13 deliveries, while Kanika Ahuja followed the English skipper to the T, recording the same figure.

WPL 2023: Although second-placed Delhi Capitals have a game in hand, Mumbai Indians are currently topping the table.

WPL 2023: Ellyse Perry held the fort for RCB.

(Photo: BCCI)

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As all of this was going on, Ellyse Perry had held the fort for Bangalore from one end. Her resilience, however, was not meant to extend till the very end as the first delivery of the 17th over saw Natalie Sciver-Brunt trapping her leg before wicket. Three deliveries later, prodigy Shreyanka Patil followed suit.

The only extravagant exception, in what was otherwise a rather stoic batting display, turned out to be wicketkeeper-batter Richa Ghosh. She scored a 13-ball 29, which included three boundaries and a couple of sixes, to help her team put up 125 runs on the board.

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A Few Bumps on the Road, but MI Get Over the Line

A good start with the ball would have balanced the scales, but that was not to be as Yastika Bhatia and Hayley Matthews, who combined to score only six runs in Mumbai’s last expedition, were once again back in their usual elements today.

The pair made their intention clear by scoring 17 runs off Devine’s bowling in the first over, as the powerplay yielded 53 runs. Bangalore, however, had the last laugh, with Shreyanka dismissing Yastika in the last delivery of the sixth over.
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Matthews followed her partner on her way back to the dugout, whereas Mandhana’s team was well and truly back in the game when Asha Shobana and Perry combined to earn a couple more breakthroughs for their team. The Indian leg-spinner sent Sciver-Brunt packing, whilst the Australian all-rounder got the better of the opposition skipper, Kaur.

WPL 2023: Although second-placed Delhi Capitals have a game in hand, Mumbai Indians are currently topping the table.

WPL 2023: Amelia Kerr played a match-winning knock of unbeaten 31 runs.

(Photo: BCCI)

A fifth breakthrough would have tipped the scales in RCB’s favour, although, such an occurrence was prevented by Amelia Kerr and Pooja Vastrakar. The duo added 47 runs for the fifth-wicket stand, and while Vastrakar eventually lost his wicket in the 16th over, Kerr took the team over the line.

Mumbai Indians have dethroned Delhi Capitals from the first position with this win, however, the latter have a game in hand and also boast of a better net run rate. The Royal Challengers, meanwhile, have avoided the last-place finish owing to the same aspect, edging past Gujarat Giants.

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