IPL 2021: Match 42, MI vs PBKS – Who Said What
Mumbai jumped to the fifth spot in the tally with their six-wicket win over Punjab Kings, keeping their qualification hopes alive.
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Mumbai Indians broke their streak of three losses to keep their qualifications hopes alive, climbing on the fifth spot in the tally by handing the Punjab Kings a six-wicket defeat in Abu Dhabi in a low-scoring affair.
Batting first, Punjab managed a below-par 135/6 on a slightly two-paced track, with Aiden Markram top-scoring with his 29-ball 42. In a move that worked for Mumbai, Krunal Pandya struck in the powerplay, trapping Mandeep Singh lbw before Kieron Pollard struck twice in the sixth over to claim wickets of both KL Rahul (21 off 22) and Chris Gayle (1 off 4).
Punjab were soon reduced to 48/4 when Jasprit Bumrah pinned Nicholas Pooran lbw for 2, however, Markram stood his ground alongside Deepak Hooda, who got 28 off 26 and stitched a 61-run stand for the fifth wicket to cease the decline. Bumrah, who claimed 2/24, strangled Punjab in the death overs alongside Nathan Coulter-Nile, who did not get a wicket but only gave 19 runs in his four overs.
Out to chase, Mumbai made a nervous start, losing both Rohit Sharma and Surykumar Yadav on successive deliveries in the fourth over of the innings bowled by Ravi Bishnoi. Although, Quinton de Kock (27 off 29) and Saurabh Tiwary (45 off 37) added 45 for the third wicket to keep MI in the hunt. Things, however, once again tilted in Punjab’s favour when Mohammed Shami cleaned up de Kock before Punjab bowlers dried up the scoring.
It seemed there might be a twist in the tale when Tiwary was caught behind off Nathan Ellis, with Mumbai still needing 44 in less than five overs. However, having gotten his eyes in, Hardik Pandya found his lost touch back at the right time, smacking four boundaries and two sixes in his unbeaten 40 off 30. He got an able ally in Kieron Pollard, who, having picked 2/8 with the ball, played a little unbeaten cameo with the bat, a 7-ball 15 that helped Mumbai chase down the target.
Losing skipper KL Rahul:
It was a great fight, but 135 was not enough on this pitch. We should have got about 170. The boys showed a lot of fight with the ball, we have done that two games in a row. The next three games will be interesting for us as the table looks interesting. It is what it is, we haven’t been able to handle the pressure. We’ll learn more if we play more together as a team. We need to be positive. We have three games, so we need to take one game at a time. We need to go out there and enjoy ourselves. All our games in the UAE have gone down to the wire, hopefully we can build on that.
Winning skipper Rohit Sharma:
We do agree that we didn’t play to our potential, but it’s a long tournament and we need to stick to our plans and reading the situations is very important and we can take a lot of confidence from that. Important not to lose the guard. The way he understood the situation was very crucial from a team’s perspective, it’s important for him to spend the time in the middle as he’s coming back from a injury. It’s a tough call and he seems very confident and the reply you get from him was very boosting as well. Saurabh has played the perfect role today and he’s done well to nudge around in the middle overs. We are gonna back him as he’s a very important player for us. The ball was coming off when we started off and the grass is coming off the surface in the middle overs and we need to adjust to the conditions. He (Pollard) is one of our key players. Crucuial part of MI for so many years. He will be happy with taking the ‘Man of the Match’ for his bowling performance.
Player of the Match Kieron Pollard:
Very important to get my 300th wicket. I know what I can do in all the facets of the game. I will be more than happy to do what the team needs of me. You try and watch and target whom you can target and not. I enjoyed my 300th wicket which was KL and obviously it’s a landmark and very special. For me, it’s just of trying to practice and it’s all about practing and batting according to the situation. I admit that I don’t have pace, swing and seam but I can use my brain and get the job done. For us it’s very important to get these 2 points and hopefully this will be the much-needed spark in the dressing room.