Mumbai: Mumbai Indians edged out Kolkata Knight Riders by 13 runs here on Sunday to keep their play-off hopes alive in IPL11. Hardik Pandya’s all-round performance, especially with the ball, was the corner stone of Mumbai’s critical win.
In a nutshell, bowling won Mumbai the match. Hardik’s spell of 2/19 in four overs coupled with Mayank Markande’s 1/25 allowed the home side to defend the not-so-formidable 181. The former also smashed 35 crucial runs in the final overs.
Kolkata suffered a blow when Chriss Lynn departed early after hitting two consecutive boundaries off Mitchell McClenaghan. The Kiwi bowler had the final laugh as Lynn tucked the ball straight to Jasprit Bumrah at short fine-leg. Young gun Shubman Gill was promoted to the opening spot in place of Sunil Narine but the Under-19 World Cup hero’s innings ended prematurely at 11. “He (Narine) wasn’t feeling well,” said KKR captain Dinesh Karthik after the match.
Robin Uthappa was lucky to see Markande drop a sitter at mid-on when he was on four. The day got worse for the leg-spinner when Uthappa smacked two sixes off his first over. He went on to score a half-century but fortune favoured the youngster. After a decent partnership with Nitish Rana (31), Uthappa launched Markande to the long-off fielder in the 13th over. Rana followed Uthappa to the pavilion in the next over.
We have learned that it is never too late for Karthik to turn the game around. But it wasn’t his day. Karthik and the devastating Andre Russell couldn’t finish the job as the West Indian fell cheaply....