Dubai: Mumbai Indians (MI) cruised to a five-wicket win over Delhi Capitals (DC) to win their fifth Indian Premier League (IPL) title -- the first time they have clinched consecutive crowns.
No other franchise has won so many titles in IPL's 13-year history; the second most successful team is Chennai Super Kings, who have won the title three times.
MI once again displayed some impressive bowling to first restrict DC, who opted to bat, to a moderate 156/7, before it rode on skipper Rohit Sharma's 51-ball 68 and Ishan Kishan's valuable 33 not out off 19 balls to romp home with eight balls and five wickets to spare.
MI were off to a rollicking start as Quinton de Kock (20) and Rohit added 45 runs in the initial four overs. Marcus Stoinis (1/23) drew the first blood for DC, dismissing de Kock off the first ball of the fifth over.
Suryakumar Yadav (19) and Sharma then stitched another 45 runs, for the second wicket, and just when DC were 10 runs short of reaching the three-digit mark, a run out ended the former's stay in the middle.
Nortje sent back Rohit in the 17th over, which left MI at 137/3. The wicket, however, came too late as MI had almost reached the target by then.
Keiron Pollard (9) and Hardik Pandya (3) fell cheaply to Kagiso Rabada (1/32) and Nortje respectively. But MI comfortably overhauled the target off the fourth ball of penultimate over.
Earlier, DC captain Shreyas Iyer and the mercurial Rishabh Pant responded to the call of the team with contrasting-yet-stylish fifties but MI restricted them to 156/7.
The two rising stars of Indian cricket came to the party on the big day, after Trent Boult pegged them back at 22 for 3 inside the powerplay, adding 96 runs in 11.3 overs for the fourth wicket.
However, MI came back strongly during final five overs.
While Iyer displayed more conservative shot selection in his 65 not out off 50 balls, the unconventional free-flowing Pant was back in his element with 56 off 38 balls, his first half-century of the season.
Discarded from India's white-ball set-up, Pant let his bat do the talking on the final day, showing the world why he is considered to be special during which a knock in which he smashed four fours and two sixes.
The treatment meted out to Krunal Pandya was that of pure disdain.
A straight six coming down the track, a slog sweep over cow corner for another maximum.
A customary slog off Nathan Coulter-Nile behind square brought about his 50 but he tried one shot too many to perish.
Skipper Iyer, at the other end, was more classical with two cover driven boundaries off the ever-dangerous Boult (3/30) in 4 overs). A flick off Coulter-Nile helped him settle down and allowed Pant to go on the offensive at the other end.
Iyer hit six fours and two sixes but the standout shot was the one in which he made room and hit Jasprit Bumrah (0/28 in 4 overs) over extra-cover for a boundary.
The evening, however, started well for MI with Boult taking charge at the onset just like he has been doing over the tournament.
Boult's opening spell in the Powerplay was hardly indicative of any groin strain that he had sustained during the Qualifier 1.
The first delivery of the final was a real beauty that kicked up from the length and also started growing bigger on Stoinis who was forced to edge it to de Kock behind the stumps.
Ajinkya Rahane was dismissed off a lousy stroke to an inswinging delivery on the pads. The intended flick was taken behind by de Kock.
Dhawan (15) started with a flick and had two more boundaries before a needless slog sweep against the turn off Jayant Yadav brought about his downfall.