Stars of the week: Eventful phase of IPL 10

The fourth week was the most eventful phase of the Indian Premier League 10 so far. It saw huge wins, a Super Over finish, the lowest score and all.

Jasprit Bumrah bowled a wide and a no-ball in the Super Over, but bailed his team out with six perfect deliveries — yorkers, dippers and a low full-toss.   -  Prashant Nakwe

The fourth week was the most eventful phase of the Indian Premier League 10 so far. It saw huge wins, a Super Over finish, the lowest score and all. While Kolkata Knight Riders and Mumbai Indians consolidated their top two positions on the points table, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Delhi Daredevils languish at the bottom after failing to win any of their games. Let’s take a look at the players, who starred in their teams’ victories of the week.

Hashim Amla: After a swashbuckling century against Mumbai Indians, which went in vain, Hashim Amla, at the top, took on the Gujarat Lions bowlers with a 40-ball 65. Amla’s form was evident from the first ball he faced. Shubham Agarwal had pitched the ball a trifle wide of the off-stump. Amla, unhurried, got to the pitch of it, and with an elegant flow of the willow, sent it racing to the cover boundary.

Amla’s knock helped Kings XI Punjab snap its four-match losing streak.

Nathan Coulter-Nile: Not many would punt against Royal Challengers Bangalore to chase down 132. For, its batting line-up consists of three T20 Gods — Chris Gayle, Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers — and, if they don’t get you, India’s new batting sensation, Kedar Jadhav, would. But Nathan Coulter-Nile removed Kohli, de Villiers and Jadhav and triggered IPL’s greatest collapse, helping Kolkata Knight Riders to an 82-run win. RCB ended up with a paltry 49, the lowest IPL total.

Ben Stokes: Ben Stokes hadn’t lived up to his 2.16 million dollar hype. He scored a 32-ball fifty against Kings XI Punjab earlier but Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) lost that game. This fifty apart, Stokes’s performances in this tournament have been pretty oridnary.

But his two-wicket haul and a maiden over helped his team to be the first to defend a target against Mumbai Indians in this IPL.

Aaron Finch: Having Gujarat Lions at 23 for two while defending 134, Virat Kohli and his men would’ve fancied a chance in front of a packed home crowd. But then came Aaron Finch. The second ball he faced, he sent it over the roof of the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium. It was a ruthless slog and many of Finch’s 72 runs came this way. The game wasn’t over when Finch’s innings ended, but he had ensured it was well out of RCB’s reach.

Gautam Gambhir: It’s getting increasingly difficult to defend a target versus Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the Eden Gardens. The last time a team managed to do that was in 2012. KKR’s sturdy top-order, led by skipper Gautam Gambhir, sets up a platform and makes it easier for the rest of its batsmen. Against Delhi Daredevils, he was there till the end, helping KKR win its 12th straight game while chasing at the Eden Gardens.

Jasprit Bumrah: Jasprit Bumrah committed the vilest of sins in the Super Over, while defending 11 runs for Mumbai Indians (MI) — he bowled a no ball. He also bowled a wide. In the middle for Gujarat Lions were Aaron Finch and Brendon McCullum, who are renowned for destroying bowling attacks. Even before the over started, it seemed like the match would be over for MI. But with six perfect deliveries — yorkers, dippers and a low full-toss — Bumrah bailed his team out.

Compiled by Praveen Sudevan

(IPL matches from April 23-29)