The world's most popular Twenty 20 cricket league - the Indian Premier League has moved into the business end of the tournament - the knockout stages, known as the Playoffs! The league stage of the tournament got over a couple of days back and Mumbai Indians, Delhi Capitals, Royal Challengers Bangalore & Sunrisers Hyderabad, qualified for the Playoffs while the remaining 4 teams returned home! Today, the first Qualifier was played between the IPL's top 2 teams - MI & DC! Shreyas Iyer won the toss for DC and asked MI to bat first, considering the dew factor! Hardik Pandya, Bumrah and Trent Boult returned after for Mumbai, after being rested for their last game, while DC went in unchanged! Quinton de Kock gave MI a rousing start with 3 boundaries off the very 1st over, bowled by Sams. Ashwin came on to bowl the 2nd over and struck almost immediately and removed Rohit for a golden duck! QDK seemed to continue his rich form and was striking the ball cleanly. He and Suryakumar Yadav (SKY) took MI to 63/1 at the end of their Powerplay. Ashwin came back to remove QDK for 40, in the 8th over!

SKY was joined by Ishan Kishan, another player who has shown a rich vein of form recently. They took MI to 93/2 at the end of 10 overs. Nortje removed SKY for a well-made 51 in the 12th over, bringing Pollard to the crease. Unfortunately, Pollard too fell for a duck, becoming Ashwin's third victim of the night and this brought out Krunal Pandya to join Kishan. Kishan got going and took both Rabada and Nortje for runs, forcing DC to bring on Stoinis in the 17th over. This turned out to be a good move, as he removed Krunal, off his first ball and gave away just 5 runs in the over. Sams, Rabada and Nortje bowled the 18th, 19th and 20th over and were taken apart for 55 runs, by a rampaging Hardik and Kishan, who also got to a half-century. This blitz took MI to 200/5 and DC had been set a steep target of 201 to win! Though the target was high, DC have the firepower to chase it down. Prithvi Shah and Shikhar Dhawan walked out to open for DC. Unfortunately, their innings got off to a horrific start, with Trent Boult taking out Shah and Rahane in the first over itself, without giving any runs!

When Bumrah took out Dhawan with a yorker off his 2nd ball in the 2nd over, Delhi had lost 3 wickets without even a single run on the board. No team has ever recovered from such a start but the might of the DC batting line-up sure could have attempted the impossible, with the likes of Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant, Marcus Stoinis and Axar Patel, in their ranks! Stoinis and Iyer began stitching together a partnership with positive intent, only for Iyer to hole out to his counterpart Rohit, off a very good ball by Bumrah! By the end of their Powerplay, DC were 32/4 with their hopes lying on Stoinis to play the innings of his life to take them home! Stoinis was trying his best but was fast running out of partners with Pant also departing cheaply for just 3 runs. Stoinis launched into a Rahul Chahar over and scored 19 runs, taking DC to a modest 65/5 at the end of 10 overs. With the dew playing a major factor, Pollard was called up to finish Chahar's quota of overs and he did a stellar job till he was taken apart for 15 runs off the 15th over. Boult also left the field with a groin strain but it wasn't of any worry to MI as there was not much batting left for DC. Bumrah came back and removed Stoinis with his 1st ball of the 16th over and then removed Sams off the 3rd ball, making it the second double-wicket maiden of the innings. Rabada smashed a couple of boundaries off the 20th over bowled by Pollard, before Axar Patel got himself bowled to end the DC chase on 143/8, falling short by 57 runs! MI had sealed a place in their 6th IPL final and now DC will have to play against the winner of the RCB vs SRH encounter to see who the other finalist of IPL 2020 is going to be! With just 3 matches to go, it is indeed getting very exciting. Bumrah was selected as the Player of the Match for his best ever bowling figures in the IPL - 4 overs for 4 wickets, giving away just 14 runs, with a maiden over!