Rain ends successive evening games
Mumbai Indians 156 for 6 (Pollard 37*, Smith 37) v Yorkshire No result
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
Persistent rain has now washed out successive evening games in the Champions League Twenty20. Both involved Indian sides. The first, in Durban on Wednesday, sent IPL champions Kolkata Knight Riders out of the tournament. The second, in Cape Town today, did not end Mumbai Indians' chances of making the semi-finals but it did force a no-result with the IPL side having worked itself into a strong position despite all their batsmen, barring the unbeaten Kieron Pollard, gifting their wickets away.
Despite injuries to two of their quick bowlers, Ryan Sidebottom and Moin Ashraf, and despite their spinners, particularly Adil Rashid, dishing out hit-me stuff, Yorkshire were able to limit the might of the Mumbai Indians line-up to 109 for 5 in the 15th over. Pollard and Harbhajan Singh combined to finally give the Yorkshire spinners the treatment they deserved, in a sequence of 6, 6, 4, 6, 4. To complete the chaos, Pollard was also dropped off the third ball of that sequence.
With two overs to go, Mumbai Indians would have eyed a total in excess of 180, and would feel hard done by the downpour, though the drizzle would have affected the Yorkshire bowlers adversely as well.
When Dwayne Smith walloped the second and third deliveries of Joe Root's opening over of innocuous offspin over the leg side boundary for sixes, Yorkshire looked headed for some serious punishment. But Mumbai Indians would soon begin to even the stakes by self-destructing. Sachin Tendulkar took the lead by running himself out in the third over.
Yorkshire's misfortune now decided to restore the equation in favour of Mumbai Indians again. In his second over, Ryan Sidebottom pulled up with what appeared to be a stiff hamstring and left the field, after manfully completing the over. He did return later to bowl one more.
To Yorkshire's horror, Moin Ashraf, who replaced Sidebottom, did his hamstring after sending down three deliveries of the sixth over, and left the field too.
Yorkshire captain Andrew Gale grimaced and brought back Root in the eighth over, and Smith promptly heaved him for successive sixes. Probably Mumbai Indians felt for Yorkshire's situation, for they went back to self-destructing.
Smith received a leg-side full toss from Root and swung it straight to deep square leg to depart for 37 off 26. Rohit Sharma, having smacked Azeem Rafiq's offspin for six the previous ball, contrived to try and squeeze a flighted yorker to third man only to see his stumps rattled. Dinesh Karthik outdid Rohit next ball, the first of the 12th, hitting a very wide Rashid delivery to short cover. Ambati Rayudu stepped out to Rafiq and found short cover again.
Rashid, bowling a mix of long hops, wide deliveries and assorted poor stuff, was fortunate to go for just under eleven runs an over. With Pollard finding his range, Yorkshire could have suffered more, but the rain grew from a drizzle to a steady downpour to limit the comedy of errors to 17.5 overs.
Abhishek Purohit is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo