The season 10 of the Indian Premier League is coming to an end and we have had a few months of riveting action with immense entertainment. The IPL 10 final is a couple of days away and we now look at some of the greatest finals of the IPL over the years. So here are five of the best IPL finals in history.
5) SUNRISERS HYDERABAD vs ROYAL CHALLENGERS BANGALORE (2016)
Sunrisers Hyderabad showed their intent early by opting to bat against Royal Challengers Bangalore at a venue where tall scores have been chased down nonchalantly. David Warner, their captain, top-scored with a 38-ball 69, before Ben Cutting finished the innings with an unbeaten 15-ball 39 to help them post 208 for 7. Eventually, however, it was Sunrisers’ bowling attack, the best in the tournament, that delivered their maiden IPL title with an eight-run win at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
Royal Challengers, however, had their batting guns. With only one fifty in nine innings leading up to the final, there were question marks over Gayle, but he was unperturbed, launching Barinder Sran for three sixes in his first two overs and lifting Royal Challengers to 42 for 0 after four.
Warner brought back Mustafizur in the 10th over, and Kohli finally got going, squeezing him past cover for four and then lofting him over the long-off boundary. With the asking rate under control, Gayle tactfully rotated the strike. Royal Challengers were cruising.
ALSO READ : The worst umpiring blunders in IPL 10
Then came the turbulence: Gayle, Kohli and de Villiers fell in the space of 20 balls, and Royal Challengers slipped to 148 for 3. They needed 61 off 37 and they needed Watson to make up for his lapses with the ball. He swatted Henriques for six over long-on, but his dismissal in the 17th over, immediately following that of KL Rahul, left Royal Challengers with too much to do in too little time.
The platform for Sunrisers’ win was set by Warner. With Kohli employing a deep point to block his cut, the Sunrisers captain brought out the straight lofted hits. When the ball was not in his half, he was happy to back away to open up the off side or carve the ball behind square. The result was eight fours and three sixes for his ninth fifty of the tournament, which he ended as its second-highest run-getter.
Yuvraj Singh, who came in at 97 for 2 in the 10th over, sustained Sunrisers’ momentum. He got going with a punchy off-drive off Watson, and then flicked Chris Jordan for six behind square. The swagger and the the free-flowing bat swing were back. Yuvraj’s dismissal came in the 17th over, soon after those of Warner and Deepak Hooda. At 148 for 5, it looked like Royal Challengers could reel back Sunrisers in the slog.
Cutting ensured that wouldn’t happen. He stayed deep in the crease, shortening the length of attempted yorkers, and clobbered the low full-tosses and half-volleys. Batting on 16 off 10 at the start of the final over, he hit Watson for 4, 6, 6 and 1 before coming back on strike for the final ball of the over, which he launched high over long-off. That over went for 24 and proved match-turning: playing their third final, Royal Challengers lost for the third time.