The trend, of teams batting second winning Indian Premier League matches, continued as Mumbai Indians completed a double over Kolkata Knightr Riders on Thursday at Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai.
But it was not the trend which rocked the league, but a certain Kieron Pollard. The West Indian registered fastest ever fifty for a Mumbai Indian player. He hit six sixes to change the dynamics of the match in the final stretch, which was until his arrival in the centre, anybody's game.
Thanks to his exploit, Mumbai Indians won the match by six wickets with 12 balls remaining in the match. And most importantly, Mumbai ended their campaign at Wankhede Stadium on a winning note.
Just like in the first meeting between the two teams at Eden Gardens, in Kolkata, MI skipper Rohit Sharma outshone his rival skipper with the bat. His unbeaten knock of 68 runs from 49 balls was the anchor the team needed while chasing a big total of 174.
Both the captains today notched up their respective 29th fifties, which is a joint record with another captain David Warner of Sunrisers Hyderabad. But the joy belonged to Mumbai skipper.
With the win, the defending champions have climbed back to third position with four wins from eight matches.
For KKR, their chance to return to top position failed with the defeat and are now second behind Gujarat Lions. Gautam Gambhir's side has four wins from six matches, while Lions have five wins from an equal number of outings.
After winning the toss, Rohit Sharma asked the visitors to bat first as a packed Wankhede crowd readied for the final game of the season.
MUMBAI INDIANS INNINGS; TARGET 175
Over 18 || Score 178/4 (R Sharma 68; Pollard 51)
Gautam Gambhir, out of options, brought in Jaydev Unadkat. And the power of Kieron Pollard is not match for medium pace ordinary operators. He reminded the ICC World T20 final.
A single to start the over, to Rohit Sharma. A straight drive, and Andre Russell fielded by putting on the line of fire at long off. Two runs.
Then back-to-back sixes as Pollard got into the mood. A dot ball, then a six to end the match. His 100th IPL match, and a 17-ball fifty too.
22 runs from the over, and Mumbai won by six wickets.
Over 17 || Score 156/4 (R Sharma 67; Pollard 31)
Sunil Narine returned for his final over. Seven runs from it, which included a four to Rohit Sharma.
Mumbai Indians 19 runs from 18 balls.
Over 16 || Score 149/4 (R Sharma 61; Pollard 30)
Needing 49 off 30 balls, Rohit Sharma took a single off the second ball of the over to give strike to Kieron Pollard. And the West Indian hit a six — a massive one over long-off.
Ball changed, and a wide. It was followed by another huge six. Flicked of the wrist, and the big man deposited the ball into cow corner stands.
Two runs off the next ball, the a wide down the leg. Clean collection by the wicket-keeper.
The over ended with another six, over long-on boundary. 23 runs from Rajagopal Sathish's second over.
Mumbai Indians need 26 runs from 24 balls.
Over 15 || Score 126/4 (R Sharma 60; Pollard 10)
Another 10-run over for Mumbai Indians. It was Rohit Sharma in the previous over to played the aggressor's role, this time, it's Kieron Pollard.
The over started with a four as Pollard belted on over the bowler's head. Two singles followed, the another four from the West Indian. This time through mid-wicket.
Two dot balls to finish the over, and Shakib Al Hasan's figures: 4-0-30-1.
Over 14 || Score 116/4 (R Sharma 59; Pollard 1)
The arrival of big hitting Kieron Pollard has prompted skipper Rohit Sharma to go overdrive. Ten runs from the over, as he hit two fours.
Andre Russell thus completed his three over, and so far he has conceded 28 runs without success.
Over 13 || Score 106/4 (R Sharma 50; Pollard 0)
Sunil Narine returned for his third over. Four dot balls off the first four deliveries. Then Jos Buttler hit a well controlled slog, for a four, between deep mid-wicket and long-on.
Buttler followed it with flat hit, and Chris Lynn, playing in his first IPL match of the season, reasoned with himself for a relay catch, with himself. Good habit from the Aussie. He's done it before, and again today.
At long-off, Lynn threw the ball into the air just when he was crossing over the boundary rope, then returned to complete the catch.
And third umpire took some 6 minutes to come to his decision.
WICKET: Jos Buttler c Chris Lynn b Sunil Narine 15 (15b)
That happened off the last ball of the over. Kieron Pollard is the new man.
Over 12 || Score 102/3 (R Sharma 50; Buttler 11)
Andre Russell on for his second over. It started with a four to Jos Buttler, a cut shot through backward point.
A single, then Rohit Shamra hit a pull shot for another four. On 49, he took two deliveries to reach the min-milestone. 29th IPL fifty for him, and shared the honours for more fifties with Gautam Gambhir and David Warner. Three captains of imperious batting talents.
Two more singles, and 11 runs from the over.
Over 11 || Score 91/3 (R Sharma 45; Buttler 5)
Extremely good over under the circumstances. Six runs from Shakib Al Hasan's third over. Three singles off the first three balls, the a two. A dot ball followed, then another single.
Over 10 || Score 85/3 (R Sharma 43; Buttler 1)
Andre Russell on, and a single to Rohit Sharma to start the over. A dot followed, before Jos Buttler opened his account with a single.
Then, Rohit played a superb flick from a leg-stump delivery, and it raced away. Just like that. Brilliant. Boundary.
A dot ball, then a single. Seven runs from the over. Mumbai Indians need 90 runs from 60 balls.
Over 9 || Score 78/3 (R Sharma 35; Buttler 0)
Super over from Sunil Narine, the magician.
The over started with a single to Rohit Sharma. It was followed by another single, then two dot balls to Rohit.
Mumbai Indian skipper took a single off the fifth ball, the Krunal Pandya came down and was bowled by a beautifully flighted delivery. Middle stump!
WICKET: Krunal Pandya b Sunil Narine 6 (5b)
Three singles and a wicket. Jos Buttler is the new man.
Over 8 || Score 75/2 (R Sharma 35; K Pandya 5)
Gautam Gambhir introduced slow medium pacer Rajagopal Sathish into the attack.
A single to Rohit Sharma to start the over, then Krunal Pandya hit a four to open his account. His cut shot beat the fielder at backward point.
A single, then a dot ball.
A single, then a prolonged review for a stumping. Pandya survived a close call. Brilliant work behind the wickets by Robin Uthappa.
Seven runs from the over. Mumbai Indians need another 100 runs from 12 overs.
Over 7 || Score 64/2 (R Sharma 33; K Pandya 0)
Some drama in Mumbai. Suryakumar Yadav, on the run, took a catch and threw the ball little too early for the umpires to be convinced of a catch, in control.
Review, and the third umpire's nod for a catch. Ambati Rayudu thus found himself walking back. His lofted shot could only travelled to long-on.
WICKET: Ambati Rayudu c Suryakumar Yadav b Shakib Al Hasan 32 (20b)
That happened off the penultimate ball of Shakib's second over. Krunal Pandya is the new man. Four runs and a wicket from the over.
Over 6 || Score 64/1 (R Sharma 30; Rayudu 31)
Jaydev Unadkat back for his second over. A six off the first ball, as Rohit Sharma tonked the fullish, straight delivery over backward square leg.
A single, then Ambati Rayudu blasted the third ball for a four through mid-wicket. It was followed by a delicate cut off back foot, for a four through third man.
Then another four. A length ball and Rayudu played towards backward point. No chance for the fielder there.
A dot to end the 19-run over. And the second-wicket stand now worth 56 runs off 4.5 overs.
Over 5 || Score 45/1 (R Sharma 23; Rayudu 19)
Gautam Gambhir, alarmed, introduced Sunil Narine into the attack. Eight runs from the over, which included a four from the bat of Rohit Sharma.
The Mumbai Indian skipper swept the second ball for a four. There were four more singles, too.
Mumbai Indians need 130 runs from 15 overs.
Over 4 || Score 37/1 (R Sharma 17; Rayudu 17)
Umesh Yadav returned for his second over and this time he's been toyed with by Rohit Sharma.
Two dot balls, then Rohit played a cut shot through backward point. Pure class, stand and deliver. It was followed by a brilliant cover drive, for another four.
A single, then a wide. Another single, and 11 runs from the over.
With dew falling early, Mumbai Indian batsmen will feel lucky. Ball coming to bat nicely, and for someone like Rohit — a pure stroke-maker — a batting paradise.
Over 3 || Score 26/1 (R Sharma 8; Rayudu 16)
Ambati Rayudu can certainly hit and Shakib Al Hasan just just witnessed that. The Bangladeshi all-rounder started well, three dot balls to Rayudu.
Then the 30-year-old batsman from Guntur hit back-to-back boundaries, a four and a six off the next two balls. A four drilled straight, then another straight hit, this time over the boundary.
A dot ball, and 10 runs from the over.
Over 2 || Score 16/1 (R Sharma 8; Rayudu 6)
What a start from Umesh Yadav, with some luck though. Parthiv Patel flashed, and flashed hard but Yusuf Pathan at first slip took a decent enough catch, diving on his left.
That's Patel departing, and Mumbai's opening woes continued.
WICKET: Parthiv Patel c Yusuf Pathan b Umesh T Yadav 1 (2b)
Ambati Rayadu, the new man, hit the next ball for a four, a flick through square leg. A wide followed, then three more singles.
A wicket and eight runs from the over.
Over 1 || Score 8/0 (R Sharma 7; Patel 1)
Straight to the knuckles, then Rohit Sharma responded with a huge six.
Jaydev Unadkat seemed to have carried away with that first ball, then the second one — it was deposited into the square leg boundary stands.
A dot ball, then a Rohit ran down for a single.
Parthiv Patel took a single off the first ball he faced, towards square leg. Then, Rohit played a circumspect front-foot pull shot, but was fielded short fine leg.
Eight runs from the over.
KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS INNINGS
Over 20 || Score 174/5 (Lynn 10; Pathan 19)
Last over of the innings, and Jasprit Bumrah did well to restrict it to 8 runs.
Three doubles off the first three balls, then a dot ball, then two singles.
Over 19 || Score 166/5 (Lynn 3; Pathan 18)
What's happening. Yusuf Pathan, with a heavy willow in his hands, is doing everything to get back to the pavilion. And Mumbai Indian fielders are happy with him.
Three drop catches, on the same area, by the same fielder.
Chris McClenaghan returned for his final over, and it started with single to Pathan. A dot ball, then a single, which was a mis-chance. Tim Southee, fielding at mid-wicket, dropped it.
Pathan hoisted, a was dropped at deep mid-wicket, and four runs. Tim Southee, what a mess. A dot ball then, Southee this time allowed the ball slip through his hands.
10 runs and McClenaghan's figures: 4-0-33-1.
Over 18 || Score 156/5 (Lynn 2; Pathan 9)
Tim Southee returned for his final over. And an eventful over from the Kiwi.
A double to Andre Russell, then the wicket of dangerous West Indian, Cleaned up. Not the perfect yorker, but still a delightful one.
WICKET: Andre Russell b Tim Southee 22 (16b)
Then, Yusuf Pathan — the owner fastest fifty in IPL — started his innings with two back-to-back fours.
He survived the third ball, a top-edge which fell just in front of an onrushing Mitchell McClenaghan at backward square leg. A single for the effort.
Two runs, and 13 runs from the over. Southee's figures: 4-0-38-2.
Over 17 || Score 143/4 (Russell 20; Lynn 0)
After a series of tidy overs, in fact three single figures overs, produced by the fielding side, Andre Russell got his own biggie.
The West Indian all-rounder hit three fours odd alternate deliveries after starting the over with a four. Brute force in display as Russell hit those fours with extreme ferocity.
13 runs from the over.
Over 16 || Score 130/4 (Russell 7; Lynn 0)
Intense cricket. Tim Southee returned for his third over and a single to Suryakumar Yadav off the first ball. A double followed as Andre Russell tried a mighty heave but the ball going as far square leg.
A dot ball, then a single. Then the wicket, caught and bowled for Southee. Short and outside, and Yadav wanted to play a front foot pull shot, but ended with a thick top-edge. Easy catch for the bolwer.
WICKET: Suryakumar Yadav c & b Tim Southee 21 (17b)
That brought dangerous Chris Lynn. A no ball, and 4 runs from the over.
Over 15 || Score 126/3 (Yadav 20; Russell 4)
One tidy over from Jasprit Bumrah to consolidate that previous wicket-taking over. Two singles and a two.
In the last five overs, Kolkata have scored 39 runs, and lost a wicket.
Over 14 || Score 122/3 (Yadav 19; Russell 1)
A wicket and six runs from the over. Good job done by Mitchell McClenaghan.
The Kiwi paceman started his third over with a single to Suryakumar Yadav, then Gautam Gambhir played pull shot, for a four.
Two dot balls, the Gambhir tried another pull shot. And the wicket, caught at mid-off by Kieron Pollard.
WICKET: Gautam Gambhir c Kieron Pollard b Mitchell McClenaghan 59 (45b)
Andre Russell is the new man.
Over 13 || Score 116/2 (Gambhir 55; Yadav 18)
Suddenly Gautam Gambhir changed gear and reached yet another fifty. The over started with a single to Suryakumar Yadav, then Gambhir hit a six over long-on. Well timed and executed.
It was followed by a four, charging down and playing through mid-wicket. Fifty off 39 balls.
Two singles and a double followed. Krunal Pandya leaked 15 runs in his second over.
Over 12 || Score 101/2 (Gambhir 42; Yadav 16)
Harbhajan Singh continued with his last over, and he leaked eight runs, for figures of 4-0-32-1. Decent effort from the seasoned pro.
The over started with a dot ball to Gautam Gambhir. A single followed, then another two singles.
Suryakumar Yadav punished the loose fifth delivery with a well timed shot. Full toss and banished to fine leg boundary.
A single to end the over.
Over 11 || Score 93/2 (Gambhir 40; Yadav 10)
A decent over to start the second half of the first innings. Six runs from Krunal Pandya's first over. Four singles and a two.
In the last five overs, KKR have scored 34 runs losing two wicket.
Over 10 || Score 87/2 (Gambhir 36; Yadav 8)
A busy over as Harbhajan Singh leaked eight runs, including a four and four singles.
Suryakumar Yadav, playing at his home ground for the visiting team, took a single off the first ball. It was followed by three more singles, then...
the former Mumbai Ranji captain played a well judged paddle sweep for his first boundary.
A single to end the over.
Over 9 || Score 78/2 (Gambhir 34; Yadav 1)
Hardik Pandya returned for his second over, and a four to start it.
Shakib Al Hasan found a thick edge off a short and wide delivery, which went past third man. A single then a dot to Gautam Gambhir.
Another single, the Shakib stood tall and reached out to play a short ball, and a fine edge. He walked. Caught behind.
WICKET: Shakib Al Hasan c Hardik Patel b Hardik Pandya 6 (4b)
New man Suryakumar Yadav started his innings with a single, towards point. Seven runs and a wicket from the over.
Over 8 || Score 67/1 (Gambhir 33; Al Hasan 1)
What a miss from Parthiv Patel. An arm bowl from Harbhajan to start his second over. It turned even as Robin Uthappa, coming down, failed to make the connection and ball ricocheted from his pads. All Parthiv needed to do was collect and dislodge. And he failed to grasp the ball.
Two singles, then the wicket, that of Uthappa. Huge relief for Patel.
Uthappa hoisted high the full toss from Bhaji, but his shot failed to take the flight and landed long-on, where Kieron Pollard took the catch.
WICKET: Robin Uthappa c Kieron Pollard b Harbhajan Singh 36 (20b)
A single, then new man Shakib Al Hasan opened his account with a single, through cover off a flighted delivery.
Over 7 || Score 67/0 (Uthappa 35; Gambhir 31)
Hardik Pandya introduced.
On the leg, and Gautam Gambhir played towards backward square leg for a single. A single followed, the Gambhir connected his pull shot well and the ball beat a diving Tim Southee at mid mid-wicket. Four runs.
A single, then Robin Uthappa gently guided the fifth delivery towards third man for a single.
A dot ball to end the over, and eight runs from it.
Over 6 || Score 59/0 (Uthappa 33; Gambhir 25)
Double bowling change for Mumbai Indians. Harbhajan Singh on and a single to Gautam Gambhir, who played a lofted shot over mid-on. Half-hearted effort from Kieron Pollard, as it looked like. But a tough ask.
Then a six, powered by Robin Uthappa over deep mid-wicket. Ferocious.
A single, then a dot ball to Gambhir.
Then, Gambhir drove through covers and once again Pollard, gingerly, fielded. Two runs.
A single nad 11 runs from the over.
End of Power-Play.
Over 5 || Score 48/0 (Uthappa 26; Gambhir 21)
Bowling change for Mumbai Indians. Rohit Sharma brought in Jasprit Bumrah.
A dot ball to Robin Uthappa, and the very next delivery, the right-handed opener lofted straight for the first six of the match.
A double followed as Uthappa played a lenght delivery outside off towards fine leg.
A dot ball, then a single. A leg bye to end the over. 10 runs from it.
Over 4 || Score 38/0 (Uthappa 17; Gambhir 21)
Mitchell McClenaghan on for his second over. A busy one.
A single to Gautam Gambhir to start the over, followed by another single, then another.
Robin Uthappa, then, played a pull shot but was brilliantly fielded at deep mid-wicket by Josh Buttler, and a certain boundary was restricted to two runs.
A single, then a dot ball to end the 6-run over. Good comeback from the Kiwi pacer.
Over 3 || Score 32/0 (Uthappa 13; Gambhir 19)
Playing with an extra batsman, in Chris Lynn, both the KKR openers are going for runs. Tim Southee continued for his second over, and a four to start the over, again.
Gautam Gambhir picked the half-volley and drove for a four through mid-on. A single then, Robin Uthappa lofted it over mid-on fielder for another four.
Then, a three runs, second of the innings. It was followed by a four, as Gambhir played towards square leg. Loose delivery and punished.
A single and 17 runs from the over.
Over 2 || Score 15/0 (Uthappa 6; Gambhir 9)
Tournament's leading wicket-taker Mitchell McClenaghan on, and he has been welcomed with a four by Gautam Gambhir. Brilliant timing, and the ball managed to beat two chasing fielding to the mid-wicket boundary.
It was followed by a pull shot, then a three with Robin Uthappa playing a gentle puch through cover.
A dot ball, than a lofted cover drive for two. Then the dropped chance. Gambhir tried to pull the short one, but resulted in a skier. Anyone can take that catch, but the bowler took the ownership, and he dropped a sitter. 11 runs from the over.
Over 1 || Score 4/0 (Uthappa 3; Gambhir 1)
Tim Southee started the proceedings at Wankhade's last game of the season. On strike was Robin Uthappa, with two slips on. A straight shot, looked like going for a four, but was fielded at mid-on. Restricted to one.
A beautiful delivery, right on the target with the ball moving in air, and just outside of off stump. Dot ball. Another dot ball as the ball swung away from the batsman.
Then a simple tuck by Gautam Gambhir, from off stump towards backward point. A single.
It was followed by a well timed cover drive. Two runs, and four runs from the first over.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Robin Uthappa (wk), Gautam Gambhir(capt.), Suryakumar Yadav, Chris Lynn, Shakib Al Hasan, Yusuf Pathan, Andre Russell, Rajagopal Sathish, Jaydev Unadkat, Umesh Yadav, Sunil Narine. KKR have two changes, Chris Lynn comes in place of Morne Morkel and Jaydev Unadkat for Piyush Chawla.
— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) April 28, 2016
Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (capt.), Parthiv Patel (wk), Ambati Rayudu, Jos Buttler, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Harbhajan Singh, Tim Southee, Mitchell McClenaghan, Jasprit Bumrah. No changed for MI.
— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) April 28, 2016
TOSS: Rohit Sharma wins toss, and Mumbai Indians bowl first against Kolkata Knight Riders
Today's match is the last match to be held at this venue this season. The Supreme Court Wednesday uphold the earlier verdict from the Bombay High Court, ordering the shifting of IPL matches out of drought-hit Maharashtra. Besides, this is the first return fixture of the season. In the first leg, Mumbai Indians have trumped Kolkata Knight Riders at Eden Gardens. But it's KKR, which will start as the favourites despite playing an away game.
Umpires: Nitin Menon and Rod Tucker
Third Umpire: Chettithody Shamshuddin
Match Referee: Ranjan Madugalle
Reserve Umpire: Navdeep Singh
Meanwhile, another blow for Rising Pune Supergiants. Faf du Plessis has joined Kevin Pietersen in the injury list.
Can't wait for mumbai Indians and Kolkatta night rider to lock horns ... It's going to be a thriller...
— Shoaib Akhtar (@shoaib100mph) April 28, 2016
Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (capt.), Parthiv Patel, Hardik Pandya, Jos Buttler, Mitchell McClenaghan, Ambati Rayudu, Kieron Pollard, Harbhajan Singh, Jagadeesha Suchith, Tim Southee, Jasprit Bumrah, Shreyas Gopal, R Vinay Kumar, Corey Anderson, Unmukht Chand, Marchant de Lange, Siddhesh Lad, Kishore Kamath, Krunal Pandya, Deepak Punia, Nitish Rana, Jitesh Sharma, Nathu Singh, Akshay Wakhare, Martin Guptill.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Gautam Gambhir (capt.), Piyush Chawla, Brad Hogg, Jason Holder, Sheldon Jackson, Kuldeep Yadav, Chris Lynn, Manan Sharma, Morne Morkel, Colin Munro, Sunil Narine, Manish Pandey, Yusaf Pathan, Ankit Rajput, Andre Russell, Rajgopal Satish, Shakib Al Hasan, Jaydev Unadkat, Robin Uthappa, Suryakumar Yadav and Umesh Yadav.
The odds are in favour of second-placed Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) as they square off against defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI), who are experiencing a campaign that is oscillating between high and low, in a potentially exciting Indian Premier League contest.
KKR and MI are the two teams that have clinched the honours alternately in the glamorous T20 league over the last four editions, but the stark contrast in their current forms tell an altogether different story, ahead of today's match.
Nonetheless, the match at the Wankhede Stadium promises to be an engaging battle between two top-notch sides.
KKR are on a roll with four successive victories in five games. Interestingly, their lone defeat of the season, by six wickets, had come at the Eden Gardens against the Rohit Sharma-inspired MI on April 13.
Captain Sharma blasted a match-winning 54-ball 84 not out to lead MI to victory in the first leg clash and KKR would be eager to set the record straight and return at the top of the pecking order.
Yesterday, Gujarat Lions survived an all-out Proteas assault in Delhi to climd at the top of league table, with five wins from six outings.
The Knight Riders have travelled well this season and have also been led brilliantly by their opener Gautam Gambhir who has been the fulcrum of the batting, aggregating 237 runs from five games.
When he fell cheaply KKR struggled on to chase down Rising Pune Supergiants' total of 160 for five and won by two wickets on April 24.
MI, at the other end of the spectrum, have had a mixed bag of results so far, wins coming in between losses and are going into the game with their confidence restored following a 25-run victory over Kings XI Punjab at Mohali on Monday.
New Delhi: Welcome to our live coverage of the Match 24 of 2016 Indian Premier League between Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders, being played at Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai.