Mumbai Indians managed to score their first points of the season with a nine-run win over Chennai Super Kings at the MA Chidambaram Stadium late on Saturday night. After an early collapse, Kieron Pollard helped revive the MI innings to post a competitive 148 which the bowlers defended in fighting fashion against a resurgent CSK side.
|MS Dhoni and Ricky Ponting shake before the match during match 5 of of the Pepsi Indian Premier League between The Chennai Superkings and the Mumbai Indians held at the MA Chidambaram Stadiumin Chennai on the 6th April 2013|
Chasing a modest 149, CSK lost Murali Vijay (5) as Munaf Patel struck timber in his first over. Mitchell Johnson got MI their second success sending back Suresh Raina caught by Ricky Ponting. Michael Hussey (20) lived a charmed life after being dropped when on 1 and 9, but was finally castled by Harbhajan Singh.
At the halfway stage, CSK still required 91 runs from 60 balls and were struggling to find any sort of rhythm. Pragyan Ojha struck twice dismissing Dwayne Bravo (10) and S Badrinath (16) putting CSK on the mat.
Ravindra Jadeja (16) and Ravichandran Ashwin (2) fell in the pursuit of quick runs needing a miracle from Dhoni (51). He almost did just that, hitting 15 runs of Pollard's 17th over to help his team inch closer to the target. However, needing 12 off the final over, the first delivery saw Dhoni attempting to hit one over the midwicket boundary, but Kieron Pollard leapt in the air and plucked off a stunning catch. CSK eventually fell nine runs short of the target.
Earlier in the evening, the Mumbai Indians won the toss and opted to bat first. The move backfired as Dirk Nannes trapped Sachin Tendulkar for a duck in the very first over. IPL debutant, Ankit Rajpoot then had Ponting (6) caught at slip attempting a pull leaving the visitors at 18 for 2 in 3.2 overs. Dinesh Karthik (37) and Rohit Sharma (8) were both given an early reprieve, but Sharma failed to capitalizs on it and fell nicking Bravo to the wicket-keeper. Bravo struck again removing Karthik leg before in his next over, leaving MI stuttering at 59 for 4.
The slide continued as Ben Laughin then had Ambati Rayudu (7) caught at third man. Dwayne Smith joined the procession as he holed out off Ashwin. Pollard (57*) was the savior for MI playing a brutal innings smashing five huge sixes. Along with Harbhajan Singh (21*), Pollard helped MI put on a decent total on the board with a late flourish. Pollard ended MI's innings with a six to finish at 148 for 6 from their 20 overs.
Man-of-the-Match: Kieron Pollard
Brief Scores: Mumbai Indians 148-6 in 20.0 Overs (Kieron Pollard 57*, Dwayne Bravo 2-44) beat Chennai Super Kings 139-9 in 20.0 Overs (MS Dhoni 51, Munaf Patel 3-29) by 9 runs.
|Kieron Pollard receives the Yes Bank sixes award during match 5 of of the Pepsi Indian Premier League between The Chennai Superkings and the Mumbai Indians held at the MA Chidambaram Stadiumin Chennai on the 6th April 2013|
245: The number of sixes hit by Kieron Pollard in Twenty20 format – 18 more than the number of fours he has hit!
65: Number of runs added by Kieron Pollard and Harbhajan Singh – highest seventh wicket partnership in IPL history. The pair obliterated the previous record stand of 60 between Ravindra Jadeja and Shane Warne for Rajasthan Royals against Kings XI Punjab at Cape Town in 2009.
50: By dismissing Dwayne Smith, R Ashwin completed his 50 wickets in the IPL – in his 50th match!
4: The number of times MS Dhoni has reached his fifty off 25 or fewer balls in the IPL. Only Virender Sehwag has done this more often- 5 times.
4: Number of ducks made by Sachin Tendulkar in the IPL. Interestingly Mumbai Indians went on to win all of these four games!
|Kieron Pollard is the man of the match during match 5 of of the Pepsi Indian Premier League between The Chennai Superkings and the Mumbai Indians held at the MA Chidambaram Stadiumin Chennai on the 6th April 2013|
Ricky Ponting: "Last two games have both gone down the wire and I am happy that we have won this one. That partnership between Pollard and Harbhajan gave us a total that we could defend. The outfield was lusher and bigger than most Indian grounds and that helped us defend the total. Our bowlers did a great job, specially the spinners in the middle overs."
MS Dhoni: "The shot selection was bad in this game, the bowlers did very well, kept getting wickets at regular intervals. 150 runs target is what we should have chased. There was a time in the last two overs where I couldn't change strike because we didn't have wickets in hand. I didn't know what the strength of the current combination of bowlers were, we let them try it out and that allows Mumbai to get away, but we should have chased it down. The pitch is very good, fast bowlers had bounce, batsmen could play shots, but it will slow down as the tournament progresses."
Kieron Pollard is the Man of the Match: "Feeling very relieved after that over that I bowled to Dhoni. I like to contribute in all the departments of the game. That catch came to me in the end, had i dropped it, I would have been the match gone. I am not a finished product as a bat, but I am trying to do what the team situation requires. I told Harbhajan to just keeping knocking it around and build a partnership."
Pollard wins an award for hitting maximum sixes, Ponting wins the 'nayi soch' (new thinking) award.
Mitchell Johnson: "It was nerve-wracking, the crowd was behind them, Dhoni got going too, but I bowled well and then Munaf bowled a good last over. It was tough to bowl in the sticky conditions and I was surprised when Ricky gave me a third over in a row, it worked out well. There was dew today, but it wasn't as bad as we thought."