Mumbai Indians have the record of bouncing back from the brink of elimination many a time at IPL over the years. Just when one thought they would crash out early, Mumbai Indians somehow tend to click at the right time . This was proved yet again.
In a much needed win encounter at Wankhede, Mumbai Indians managed to hold their nerves to beat Kings XI Punjab by mere 3 runs to stay alive and remain in the hunt for a place in the play- offs.
Mumbai set the visiting team a stiff 187 to chase after Kings skipper Ravichandran Ashwin had won the toss and then restricted the Kings XI to 183/5 to register their 6th win in 13 games and boost their points tally to 12 with one game to play.
The win takes Mumbai jumped to the 4th spot in the points table. The defeat left Punjab also on 12 points with one game to go.
For Mumbai, Bumrah turned in a match-winning bowling performance with brilliant figures of 3/15, which included the crucial wicket of the in-form opener K L Rahul (94 off 60 balls) in the penultimate over, when the game was on a knife edge with the Kings XI needing 20 off 9 balls. Rahul was caught at long off by Ben Cutting. Rahul batted brilliantly, striking 10 fours and 3 sixes. He got support from Aaron Finch ( 46) both shared a 111 run partnership and looked to take the game away from Mumbai and send them out of the tournament. But that was not to be.
Punjab made a baffling batting move sending Axar Patel ahead of Yuvraj Singh and Manoj Tiwary. Yuvraj Singh who has been in and out of the side , and having a very poor IPL 2018, continued his poor show scoring only 1.
The axing of Karun Nair , inclusion of out of form Yuvraj Singh, no place for David Miller in the playing XI has surprised many.
Ravichandran Ashwin’s captaincy after a bright start in the IPL 2018 has flopped miserably as the tournament went on.
Earlier, Kieron Pollard struck a blistering 50 to rescue the Mumbai Indians from a mid-innings slump and help his side post a formidable 186/8.
MI got off to a flying start, scoring 57/1 after 5 overs. Then, the home side lost 3 wickets in quick succession, including two off successive balls, to the pace bowling of Andrew Tye (4/16) before Pollard (50 off 23 balls) and Krunal Pandya (32 off 23 balls) resurrected the stuttering Mumbai innings.
Before this 50, Pollard had scored a paltry 83 runs from 8 matches. His 65 run stand with Krunal in 36 balls steered Mumbai out of trouble after they slumped to 71/4. Skipper Rohit Sharma’s horrendous form continued in the IPL scoring a mere 6.