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IPL 2014 – MI vs KXIP: MI Finally Get On Board

By on May 3, 2014

Mumbai Indians 170 for 5 (Rohit 39, Anderson 35, Gautam 33, Pollard 28*) beat Kings XI Punjab 168 for 5 (Saha 59*, Maxwell 45) by five wickets…

Kieron Pollard came agonisingly close to pulling off a win in the previous match, and succeeded today to give Mumbai Indians their first win of 2014 – in their sixth attempt.

IPL 2014 - MI vs KXIP: Corey AndersonTaking strike to his former MI team-mate Mitchell Johnson with the defending champions needing 25 off 12 balls, Pollard struck a six, watched a wide slide down the leg side, clipped two to cow corner, squeezed a yorker to the fine leg boundary, heaved a one-handed four to deep backward square leg and smashed a singe to long-on.

Nineteen runs off the over, and effectively game over. Back on strike, Pollard hit the winning runs with a six off Sandeep Sharma, finishing not out on 28 off 12 balls as MI won by five wickets.

With those seven deliveries, the game slipped away from Kings XI Punjab as MI, back on their home turf of the Wankhede Stadium, handed them their first loss of IPL 7.

Like an engaging T20 match should, Mumbai’s chase veered to and fro. The hosts were jolted in the first over when Ben Dunk edged an away-moving delivery from Sandeep to Wriddhiman Saha, and not long after Ambati Rayudu was trapped lbw. Sandeep’s strikes were counter-punched by CM Gautam, who in between sharing words with the bowler swatted him for two lovely sixes. Gautam helped add 47 in 41 balls with Rohit Sharma before he was sent on his way for a 29-ball 33 when attempting a needless reverse paddle against Rishi Dhawan in the tenth over.

Despite the setback, MI found two big overs immediately; Dhawan’s third over contained sixes from Rohit and Corey Anderson to get the asking rate to ten, and then Anderson slogged three fours and a six off Akshar Patel’s fourth over. But the game had a few more twists in it.

With 46 needed off 28 balls, Rohit (39) edged L Balaji to Saha and in the following over, Anderson (35) lofted Dhawan to David Miller at long-off. Then Aditya Tare helped loot 16 off Balaji’s final over, the 18th, to make the equation 25 off 12 balls. Up stepped Pollard with a cool-headed innings to give allow the franchise heave a huge sigh of relief.

That flurry of boundaries put in perspective the final over of KXIP’s innings, bowled by Lasith Malinga, which produced just three runs and accounted for the dangerous Miller. Miller had just taken 20 off the 19th over, bowled by Zaheer Khan, and KXIP looked set to touch 180. But Malinga bowled a superb six balls, varying his pace to stifle runs.

Earlier, after George Bailey opted to bat in sapping conditions, KXIP had, not surprisingly, struggled to get an opening stand together. A direct hit from Rohit off the first ball of the third over did for a lethargic Virender Sehwag, and eight deliveries later Anderson struck as Cheteshwar Pujara swished and walked after getting a thin edge to the wicketkeeper. This extended KXIP’s run of poor starts inside the Powerplay: 52 for 3, 10 for 2, 28 for 2, 33 for 2 and today’s 24 for 2. Only once, against Sunrisers Hyderabad, have KXIP not lost a wicket in the first six overs.

Maxwell and Saha put on 69, of which the Australian made 45 off 27 balls in his trademark gung-ho style. When Maxwell fell to Harbhajan Singh, Saha was on 19 off 26 balls but 15 runs in four balls from Pollard saw the wicketkeeper-batsman switch gears. Bailey (15) and Miller (16) fell to Harbhajan Singh and Malinga as Mumbai hit back at the death, and it proved crucial. Saha remained not out on 59 off 47 balls, having scored 47 off his last 24 faced, but overall KXIP will feel they were 15 runs short.

Source: gocricket

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