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    (Original post by Mackay)
    Well done Delhi! A tense victory, but a vital one for them. I've worried for them recently, but they performed really well against a fierce Sunrisers side.

    Nair did great to score 83 from 50+ balls, really, and he showed heart and a steady-head at the death to get the Daredevils over the line. Warner will really regret that drop, but Nair - like all the best players during their best innings - seemed to have nine lives today. He survived a drop, and a caught behind appeal.

    I loved watching Pant/Nair's partnership. This IPL has really been one for the openers, but also one for the partnerships. ABDV/Kohli, Uthappa/Gambhir, but today's knock between Pant and Nair was right up there with the best of them.

    It's all getting tight at the top, isn't it?

    Warner didn't really deserve to be on the losing side today, but Morgan continues to disappoint. How good was Mishra's work for the run out to send back Hooda, too? Great stuff.
    Delhi played well today I hope they make the play offs but I feel sorry for them they have to play RCB I can't see anything but a RCB win.

    As for SRH their middle order needs to really improve and get runs apart from that everything is fin just need to ensure fielding is better also
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    I didn't even bother mentioning Brathwaite in that review of the match which was poor form from me. He was great, and chipped in with priceless wickets and a brilliant run out.

    Kings XI against Pune in a dead rubber today. There's nothing for them to play for bar pride. I imagine we'll see both sides give lads who haven't had a chance yet a run out - and rightly so.

    I'm looking forward to the Mumbai game. Both they and the Lions are in a very similar run of form. Mumbai have enjoyed late surges into the play-offs in previous years, but I'd like Lions to get there because it shows you can be a new side and succeed.

    I think Smith's presence is crucial for Gujarat. They'll be full of confidence post-KKR victory, too. He chipped in with figures of 4-8 and Raina will need him to show his brilliance with bat and ball again, while Mumbai should recall Pandya in my view, and hope Guptill continues the potential he has shown and lands a big score.

    Big game.
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    Pune win the race to avoid the wooden spoon, then. I thought Kings had it sewn up going into that final over, but it was some really impressive and powerful power hitting from Dhoni to get his side over the line.

    As for Mumbai... well, it's a shame that Buttler couldn't get them over the line. I'll be very surprised if they manage to advance now, because their NRR is so poor.

    Gujarat were great though, and I thought they dominated with the ball. The Indians' fielding was dreadful, in truth. Misfields galore, overthrows...you could see Ponting fuming in the dugout.

    Smith, Raina and McCullum all chipped in with priceless knocks (how weird was the latter's dismissal, by the way?) and Bravo did really well to dismiss Buttler and ruin his and Rana's blossoming partnership, effectively killing Mumbai dead in their tracks.

    Two big games tomorrow: KKR vs Sunrisers, and RCB at Delhi. Winner takes all time!
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    Congratulations, KKR. That's a really good win for them - and it shows how home advantage, as this stage of the tournament, can help. They knew the conditions and a 22-win victory over a team as fierce as Sunrisers isn't to be sniffed at.

    Again, though, Uthappa/Gambhir's inability to build an opening partnership is a worry for them.

    Their spinners were exceptional, though. Most notably Narine, who got three wickets for just 20-odd runs. Yadav also chipped in, after Pandey and Yusuf Pathan started brightly and gave them a solid base to defend. After the former was dismissed, KKR struggled to get runs and it was largely thanks to the brilliant death bowling from Mustafizur, Sran and Bhuvneshwar.

    Warner gave his wicket away and it was left to Dhawan to spearhead the fightback, but the wicket was deteriorating by then and Sunrisers had no chance.
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    So: Sunrisers vs KKR in the eliminator, and Gujarat vs. RCB.

    It's hard to look past RCB at this stage, really. They needed four wins to make it to the final four - and they managed it. Kohli's 50 today was brilliant, and got them over the line. Their batting depth is just marvellous. They are such a fierce batting side, and it's all pointing towards a first trophy for them.

    Home advantage will be a big factor for them, too. de Kock probably didn't deserve to be on the losing side today, but he scored 60/138 of his side's runs and can look around and think his teammates let him down with some just cause.

    Gayle/ABDV didn't score, but Kohli just refused to back down. His twos were vital, and it was exactly the type of T20 innings we've come to expect from him. It was fitting he hit the winning runs, because this tournament has been the Kohli show. That man deserves to be in the final four.

    Aravind and Chahal did great things with the ball, especially the latter, who picked up three wickets. Kohli's catch of Nair was excellent - as too was his signal to the crowd to be quiet.
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    How many runs will kohli get?
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    So RCB have qualified, that too for Q1 :dance: If they can just win 2 more home games then they'll have done it! :ahee:
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    RCB are definitely the side to beat.

    To have this level of momentum going into the final four, with Kohli in tow, is just priceless.

    Today is exactly the reason why, while ABDV is
    my favourite batsman in the world, I rate Kohli higher.

    You wonder how much today's loss will affect the Sunrisers, to be honest. It could mentally scar them - and Warner is really short of runs right now.
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    Seems really strange to say Gujarat are the underdogs tomorrow, considering they finished top of the table.

    But RCB are a force to be reckoned with - especially in Bangalore. Kohli's last four innings, in the must-win quartet of matches: 109, 75*, 113 and 54*. Plus, Gujarat know the last time they went toe to toe with Kohli, ABDV and Gayle and co, they racked up the heaviest IPL defeat of all time by 140+ runs.
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    I reckon rcb will make the final and then lose. Hopefully KKR win ipl again, the utthapa and gambhir show needs to fire and the oh so sweet smashing of the ball by Yusuf and manish.

    Really don't understand srh place in the top 4 - the batting bar Warner is terrible and the bowling is top quality a one sided team for sure...
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    Gujarat's best hope is Bravo firing with the ball, to be honest. His slow dippers could spell trouble for the RCB upper order. Basically, RCB's gameplan is simple: if their upper order fire, they'll win. It really is that straightforward for them.

    Bravo is a secret weapon for the Lions, though.

    Finch and B-Mac are capable of a hefty opening partnership, and Raina could wave his magic and land a special innings, so we'll see. I just think the odds are stacked against Gujarat.
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    Ab de villiers...I can't believe it.
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    No surprise, then. RCB emerge victorious and will go straight through to the IPL 2016 final.

    de Villiers' 79 not out spearheaded their innings, and it just shows Bangalore's strength even when Kohli and Gayle don't fire.

    I really worried for RCB at one stage. They did well to limit Gujarat to 159, but when they were six down with 10 overs gone and still needed 90+ runs, I really worried for them.

    The surface was an odd one. Really slow, but a decent batting wicket. That meant it was always going to be low scoring, and it was a matter of the batsman picking their shots and settling for twos and threes at times. That should have been perfect Kohli territory, but RCB slipped to 29-5 and that mirrored Gujarat's slow start of 9-3.

    He won't get the plaudits, but full credit to Abdulla, who provided the perfect partner for ABDV amid the chaos. He also did exceptionally well to dismiss McCullum and Finch so early, and Watson's 4 wickets were vital too.

    It's a shame Kulkarni's figures of 4-14 didn't result in him winning the match. He delivered big time, bowling Gayle/Kohli early doors and reducing Sachin and Rahul to ducks.
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    Abdulla, Kulkarni wooooooooowwwww abdulla for the bowling and technique of batting, the way he played that four and the winning runs were crisp and so lovely to watch kulkarni just bowled brilliantly - tbf guj should have won after that start. I hope these 2 performances don't go overlooked, without them, the game would be 100% different
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    It's lucky ABDV fired, too, because today was Kohli's first T20 duck in 50 innings. Remarkable.

    ABDV's shots were just exquisite. His record against Gujarat is now so formidable. 208 runs scored against them now without a dismissal.
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    If Kohli doesn't get you then ABDV will :ahee:

    Glad RCB have made it to the the final though. Another home game on Sunday
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    Kohli took RCB to playoffs. AB took RCB to final. And hopefully Gaylestorm will take RCB to the title.
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    Kohli: "ABDV is the best batsman in the world. I just bow down to him."

    High praise indeed.

    So, it's KKR vs Sunrisers - or, more interestingly, Gambhir vs Dhawan. With the latter misfiring on the international stage, how many Indian fans would love to have the former in his prime again.

    KKR's game plan should be simple. The pitch should offer turn and grip, so they need to deploy Narine and hope he continues the form he showed when he dismissed Gayle and McCullum recently.

    Of course, they'll also be boosted by Russell's return from injury. You imagine he'll replace Holder - and that's such a boost for Knight Riders if he does. He's a big game player, and a winner.

    His 2016 so far has seen him take the most T20 wickets of any bowler, including Mustafizur et al.

    He's also won the Bangladesh Premier League, Pakistan Super League, Big Bash League and World T20 in the last six months. Remarkable stuff.
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    Such a shame for KKR! I really wanted them to advance - and today, Kuldeep didn't deserve to be on the losing side.

    Sunrisers advance to face Gujarat, and that promises to be intriguing. They were always going to defend 163, in truth. Their bowling attack is one of the best in the competition. Their seamers are marvellous, and while KKR had won 6/8 games when chasing, the outstanding fielding from Sunrisers got them over the line.

    Yuvraj's breezy 44 was great, and reminded everyone of his ability. KKR were always going to struggle - and they did, finding themselves 69-4 after 11, but Pandey and Yadav gave Sunrisers a scare but Mustafizur displayed his awesome death bowling. He conceded just 8 off his final two overs.
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    So, your IPL 2016 final is: Sunrisers vs. RCB.

    Warner was absolutely imperious today - and definitely deserved to spearhead his side's ascension to the final. I make that his eighth 50 of the IPL tournament. They needed him to chip in, too, because there was very little else separating the two sides.

    Gujarat and Sunrisers exchanged wins during the regular season, so it's no surprise it was tight. Despite McCullum and Finch's best efforts, though, the Lions just didn't have the talismanic figure of Warner.

    I actually thought Sunrisers would lose after I saw the teams, with Mustafizur ruled out. Bipul was the perfect foil to Warner, though. The duo seemed to rub off each other really well - and it was a tough ask for the former, given Bravo/Kaushik's dominance with the ball. Both chipped in with two wickets, at 32 runs and 22 runs respectively.

    But what can you do when Warner is playing like that? I read an interview with him last month where he claimed he was really enjoying his cricket and had learned to like himself as a person. That's great to hear. As an Englishman, I have never been his biggest fan. But his talent is unquestionable.
 
 
 
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