Pune: Steve Smith played a captain’s knock to guide Rising Pune Supergiant to a seven-wicket victory over Mumbai Indians here on Thursday night. Smith hit 84 not out in 54 balls as Pune chased Mumbai’s 184 with a ball to spare.
Earlier, leg-spinner Imran Tahir produced a sensational three-wicket burst in the space of 10 balls but Hardik Pandya’s late heroics took Mumbai Indians to 184 for 8.
South African Tahir (3/28), who was unsold in the IPL auction and drafted in the Pune team as a late replacement, triggered a top-order collapse to put brakes on Mumbai’s rollicking start after they were put into bat.
Mumbai did not have any substantial partnership after the opening wicket stand of 45 between Parthiv Patel (19) and Jos Butler (38) before Pandya’s late flourish took them to a good total. Pandya remained not out at 35 from 15 balls (1x4; 4x6) as Mumbai added 64 runs in the last five overs.
Tahir cleaned up Patel in his second ball of the match, giving Pune the first breakthrough after Mumbai had knocked off 41 runs in the first four overs. He dealt a body blow to Mumbai in his next over by sending back captain Rohit Sharma (3 off 7 balls) who tried to work Tahir’s delivery to the leg side without any foot movement only to lose his stumps.
Just two balls later, Tahir dismissed opener Butler, who was going great guns, in an LBW decision to rock the Mumbai innings. Butler, who hit three sixes and as many fours in his 19-ball knock, was a bit unlucky as it appeared that the ball got an inside edge of his bat....