One-run victories

When Mumbai Indians beat Rising Pune Supergiant on May 21, 2017, to win its third Indian Premier League title, it did so by completing only the eighth ever one-run victory in an IPL match.

The Mumbai Indians team members celebrate after the victory in IPL 10.   -  K. R. Deepak

When Mumbai Indians beat Rising Pune Supergiant on May 21, 2017, to win its third Indian Premier League title, it did so by completing only the eighth ever one-run victory in an IPL match.

Here are a couple of interesting trivia about this one-run victory:

i) The first ever one-run victory in the IPL also came on the same date, May 21, nine years ago in 2008.

ii) On that occasion, it was Mumbai Indians that lost the game, and life has now come a full circle for the team.

Mumbai Indians previously had only once won an IPL match by a one-run margin, and it so happens that even that victory, in 2012, was against a Pune-based franchise — Pune Warriors. No other team has been involved in more one-run victories. King XI Punjab has also won exactly two IPL matches by one-run margin.

The one-run victory in the final of the 2017 IPL means the two lowest, successfully-defended scores, where the margin of victory was one run, are both by Mumbai Indians. In the match against Pune Warriors in 2012, Mumbai defended 120. And in the 2017 final, it defended 129. All the other one-run victories in the IPL have come when the target has been 135 runs or higher. The table below will also show you that Delhi is the only venue to have witnessed more than a single one-run victory in the IPL.

List of One-Run Victories in the IPL

1Kings XI PunjabMumbai Indians190Mumbai21-May-08
2Kings XI PunjabDeccan Chargers135Johannesburg17-May-09
3Delhi DaredevilsRajasthan Royals153Delhi29-Apr-12
4Mumbai IndiansPune Warriors121Pune03-May-12
5Chennai Super KingsDelhi Daredevils151Chennai09-Apr-15
6Gujarat LionsDelhi Daredevils173Delhi27-Apr-16
7Bangalore Royal ChallengersKings XI Punjab176Mohali09-May-16
8Mumbai IndiansRising Pune Supergiant130Hyderabad21-May-17


Also, it appears that India has an affinity for one-run victories in T20 tournament finals because there have only been three one-run victories in the finals of T20 tournaments across the world and two of those have been in India. The previous instance was when Bengal beat Madhya Pradesh by one run when defending a score of 142 in the final of the 2011 Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, India’s premier domestic T20 tournament. Manoj Tiwary, who was on the winning side on that occasion, ended up on the losing side, Rising Pune Supergiant, in the final of the 2017 IPL.

The only other one-run win in a T20 final came in Zimbabwe’s Stanic Bank20 Series in 2010, when Mashonaland Eagles, defending a score of 167, beat Mid-West Rhinos by a run.



Mumbai Indians finished on top of the points table during the league stages and also went on to win the IPL. Has this happened before?

Shyam Murali, Chennai, Tamil Nadu

This has happened once before, when Rajasthan Royals topped the league during the inaugural edition of the IPL in 2008, and went on to beat Chennai Super Kings in the final. The 2017 IPL final between Mumbai Indians and Rising Pune Supergiant was the fifth instance of teams that finished first and second in the league stage of an IPL meeting each other in the final. However, prior to Mumbai Indians’ victory in this edition, in the previous four such instances, it was the team finishing second that had won the title.

David Warner scored the most runs in the IPL this year. He was also the highest scorer two seasons ago, in 2015. Has any other player been the highest scorer in two editions of the IPL?

Abhinav Ramesh, Bengaluru, Karnataka

You are right. David Warner led the scoring charts in the 2015 and 2017 editions of the IPL with 562 and 641 runs respectively. However, he is not the only player to have won the Orange Cap (given to the leading run scorer in an IPL season) on more than one occasion. Chris Gayle has done this twice as well, in 2011 and 2012. Warner almost collected a hat-trick of Orange Caps but missed out in 2016 despite aggregating 848 runs that season, which is the second-most runs scored by any batsman in a single season of the IPL. However, unfortunately for Warner, Virat Kohli had an outstanding IPL in 2016, finishing with a mammoth 973 runs, including four centuries.

Has Rohit Sharma won more IPL titles than any other cricketer?

— Vasu Nigam, New Delhi

That would be correct, because apart from his three IPL titles with Mumbai Indians (in 2013, 2015 and 2017), Rohit Sharma was also part of the Deccan Chargers team that won the 2009 IPL, making it four titles in all for him. There are four other players who have been part of the winning side in three IPL seasons each — Yusuf Pathan, Ambati Rayudu, Kieron Pollard and Lasith Malinga.

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