The Bangalore Royal Challengers bowlers got a deck that offered bounce and they made full use of it. Mitchell Starc, Ashok Dinda, Varun Aaron and Harshal Patel all peppered the batsmen with chin music — some bouncers intimidating, others too high even for the wicketkeeper to catch.
Obviously, in rampaging form for the last two games, West Indian Kieron Pollard, leading the Mumbai Indians’ batting was not amused.
That Pollard’s mood was off surfaced when he stared at his West Indian teammate Chris Gayle as the RCB opener threatened a throw at his end.
A Starc bouncer whizzed past Pollard’s attempted hook in the 17th over. The pacer had something to say to Pollard on his follow through but the batsman shooed him away.
But as the next ball was to be bowled, Pollard pulled out. Believing it was on purpose, the Australian went ahead with the delivery targeting the batsman. Pollard dodged the ball and then charged at the bowler flinging his bat at Starc.
Fortunately, the bat slipped and did not hit Starc as the umpires tried to pacify tempers in the middle.
The Australians and the West Indians have not been enjoying each other’s company too much of late.
Darren Sammy and James Faulkner had a verbal battle before their World T20 clash in March, while Shane Watson and Andre Russell had an altercation in the Rajasthan Royals’ game against Kolkata Knight Riders on Monday.
Tuesday’s incident was reminiscent of Marlon Samuels throwing his bat at Shane Warne in the 2013 Big Bash, and Gautam Gambhir’s tussle with Virat Kohli in last season’s IPL.
Like is the case in such incidents, one party loses out. RCB went astray, as a charged-up Pollard and Rohit Sharma, who was at the other end, slogged with the power of revenge to score 54 in the 3.2 overs that remained.
From four for 84 at one stage, Mumbai had piled on a formidable 187 for five.