In an exciting IPL match between Mumbai Indians (MI) and Kings XI Punjab, stand-in skipper Kieron Pollard’s awesome six-hitting handed a dramatic last-ball win for the Mumbai team. Chasing a stiff target of 198, Mumbai Indians slammed 136 runs in the last 10 overs, the highest in the IPL history for the last 10 overs, to win by three wickets.
Rahul and Gayle Make Merry for Punjab
Earlier, Kings XI Punjab’s openers KL Rahul and Chris Gayle put on a 116-run opening partnership in 12.5 overs. The duo started slowly but exploded from the fifth over onwards. Rahul scored a century, while Gayle made a quick-fire 63.
Kings Xi could not quite convert the perfect opening stand to an insurmountable total. The rest of the batsmen lost their way. After Gayle left, the Punjab side lost wickets at regular intervals. Rahul did not get strike as well as he would have liked. Some late-overs flourish, led by Rahul himself, took the score to 197 for four.
Mumbai Indian’s Roller Coaster Ride
Mumbai Indians started the innings briskly. In the absence of regular skipper and opener Rohit Sharma, who sat out because of an injury, newcomer Sidhesh Lad opened with Quinton de Kock. Both the openers got starts, but perished while trying to increase the run rate.
Mumbai Indians were 56 for 2 in the eighth over when Pollard walked in. From then onwards, it was a Pollard show. He hit 10 sixes and three boundaries in just 31 balls for his 83. He kept on slamming sixes even as wickets tumbled at the other end.
In the last two overs, Mumbai needed 32 runs. Pollard hit two sixes and a four to take 17 runs in the 19th over bowled by Sam Curran. They needed 15 more runs to win in the final over. Pollard hit a six and four in the first two balls. Even though he got out in the next ball, the remaining batsmen ensured that this effort was not wasted.
Pollard, the man of the match, was obviously a happy man. He said in the post-match presentation:
“I went up the order, I enjoy batting at Wankhede, I thought if we could get some sixes off Ashwin in the middle we’d be in the game. I love the ball sailing into the stands.”
In today’s fixture, Rajasthan Royals will host Chennai Super Kings.